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TRANSCRIPT: Majority Leader Schumer Remarks At The White House Signing Ceremony For The Chips And Science Act

Washington, D.C.   Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) today spoke at the White House as President Biden signed the bipartisan and historic Chips and Science bill into law. Below are Senator Schumer’s remarks, which can also be viewed here:

Isn’t this a great day?

It’s a great day.

Thank you President Biden for inviting us to the White House. Thank you Speaker Pelosi and Secretary Raimondo!  And thanks to all my great Senate colleagues who are here today as well. Well, what a six weeks it has been for the Senate: the incredible Inflation Reduction Act, the PACT Act, gun reform, NATO, and one of the most important things that we’ve done for America in years if not decades: Chips and science!

For the last century, American prosperity was anchored on our unmatched commitment to scientific research and innovation. The question facing America today is whether that prosperity will live on in the century to come.

Today, by enacting the Chips and Science Act—the largest investment in manufacturing, science, and innovation in decades—we say that America’s best years still lie ahead.

All too often government and businesses are accused of thinking too short-term, but this is one of the most significant long-term thinking bills in ages. I firmly believe our grandchildren will work in jobs we can’t even envision now because of these great investments.

And to the innovators, job-creators, and workers who’ve witnessed the slow erosion of America’s semiconductor industry, we will bring these jobs back to our shores, and end our dependence of foreign chips. The chips that make everything from cars to household appliances to medical devices that now are making them more expensive and when we bring them back the prices will go down. Very important to our people.

The microchip is an American original. We used to lead the world in this technology and it’s time that we lead the way once again!

We also made the largest down-payment in scientific research in decades, the kind we’d seen after World War II that unleased a half a century of prosperity. We’ll cultivate the tech hubs of tomorrow, to spur new innovations and new discoveries to create countless new jobs right here at home!

It’s a game-changer for so many places in America and for states like mine. Places like Albany and Syracuse and Rochester and Buffalo – where Mr. Aviv is from, you will hear from him – and Long Island have long had the workforce, long had the ingenuity, long had shovel-ready sites. But with the Chips and Science Act, we can finally have the jobs too! And that’s true for all of America as well as New York.

It’s been a remarkable time for the Senate these last six weeks. It started last year, of course, when we passed the first Infrastructure law in years. And in the last six weeks alone we’ve passed not only Chips and Science, but also veterans’ health care, gun safety, NATO and now the Inflation Reduction Act has passed the Senate!

The groundbreaking IRA bill – one of the most significant pieces of legislation in decades – will fight inflation, lower prescription drug and energy costs for the average American, create millions of good-paying union jobs, and it is the most significant bill fighting climate change we have ever, ever passed! I salute my entire Democratic caucus, all fifty with differing views, for coming together and uniting behind this groundbreaking piece of legislation.

These bills are what progress looks like! Don’t tell me things can’t change!

And I want to thanks to everyone who made signing of the Chips bill possible: our amazing Chair of this Conference Committee, Senator Maria Cantwell of Washington State. Senators Cardin and Coons and Luján and Portman and Van Hollen and Kelly and Sinema and Cornyn and Warner and Whitehouse, and so many others.

And thank you also to Senator Young: my partner in this bipartisan act. He and I worked on this bill, originally called the Endless Frontiers bill, I still love that name but it’s gone. Anyway, he and I worked on this bill for more than three long years. I was on my bike one morning in the Senate gym and I told Todd I believed America had to invest in science and research, and I was passionate about this issue. He was passionate as well, and we got to work on the Endless Frontier Act, which became the blueprint for the Chips and Science Act.

I’ve always said that Democrats would be ready to work with Republicans when possible and at today’s signing we celebrate such an accomplishment. 

And I want to give a special shout-out to my staff. They are amazing, hard-working, and brilliant and I couldn’t have done it without them.

And finally, last but certainly not least, I want to thank our great President for his leadership. All of these things that we have done, every single one of them would not possible without President Biden’s steadfast, dedicated leadership and vision. Thank you Mr. President!

In closing, let me say this: for decades, it was America’s fierce commitment to science, research, innovation, and advanced manufacturing that made us the envy of the world.

Today we face the great task of preserving that legacy in this century, in a world of fierce competition and hungry authoritarians both abroad and now even at home. Authoritarians are cheering for us to lose, hoping we sit on our hands and fail to adapt to the 21st century.

We dare not cede the mantle of global leadership in this century. No, we mean for America to lead this century just as we’ve always had. We will show that democracy will always be the best system to govern in a tumultuous world.

It certainly won’t happen on its own, but today we are laying the foundation for a bold, bold future. Today, by enacting the Chips and Science Act, we are making clear we believe another great American century lies on the horizon.