Remarks by President Biden on the CHIPS and Science Act at IBM Poughkeepsie

IBM Poughkeepsie
Poughkeepsie, New York

2:02 P.M. EDT

THE PRESIDENT:  Well, Abby, thank you very much.  That was very nice of you — from “the” Ohio State.  (Laughter.)  And we have a running battle in my office because we have some that went to that other Ohio university.  And it’s constant.  But I —

Look, folks — Arvind, thank you very much for hosting us today.  It’s really important to us. 

And, Governor, thank you for the passport into the state.  I appreciate it very much.  You’re a great partner to me and a great leader to this state in creating jobs and making New York once again the hub of manufacturing in the world.  (Applause.) 

And they couldn’t be here today but you have two — a special thanks to New York’s two great senators, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, who never tells you what’s on his mind.  (Laughter.)  You never have to wonder.  He’s done a hell of a job.  And Senator Gillibrand.  She’s done a great job as well.

It’s great to be here with the Hudson Valley Congressman, Sean Patrick Maloney.  (Applause.)  Sean, I’m Catherine Eugenia Finnegan’s son.  I just want you to know that, okay? 

And also, Paul Tonko — another Irishman.  I’m only kidding, obviously.  But I just want you to know that — at any rate — 

And the newest member, Pat Ryan, who’s proved the pundits wrong and got elected in August.  (Applause.)  Pat, it’s great to be with you, pal. 

It’s a hell of a delegation.  It’s one of the most competent in the country.

And it’s great to be here at IBM, here in Poughkeepsie — you know, an iconic American company founded more than 100 years ago and that has more patents than any other U.S. company — than any other.  And I feel it’s going to keep going.  And the source of American jobs, American innovation, and American pride.

And it’s here — it’s here at this factory and the factories of other companies across America where America’s future is literally being built because of the groundbreaking CHIPS and Science Act that I signed into law with the help of the Majority Leader Schumer and the members of Congress that are here today.

Chuck stayed the course.  He stuck with me and we got it done.

And, folks, by the way, just since we’ve been elected, we’ve created 678,000 new manufacturing jobs.  Where — (applause) — and we’re just getting started.  Where is it written that we can’t lead manufacturing in the world?  I don’t know where that’s written.  And that’s one of the things the CHIPS Act is going to change.  A law that’s going to build the future and a proud, proud legacy not only for IBM, but for the country — a legacy of innovation and manufacturing that exists in this region of New York.

It was here in Poughkeepsie where the rifles for World War One were made; where the first electric typewriters, calculators, and even cough drops were made.  I brought some with me.  (Laughter.)

And it’s here now where the Hudson Valley could become the epicenter of the future of quantum computing, the most advanced and fastest computing ever, ever seen in the world. 

Quantum computing has the potential to transform everything, from how we create new medicines to how we power artificial intelligence and cybersecurity.

It’s technology that is vital to our economy and equally important to our national security — our national security.  And it’s technology that’s made possible because of semiconductors — those tiny little computer chips — everyone in this room knows better than in any other room in the country — the size of a fingertip, that power our everyday lives — everything in our lives: smartphones, cars, washing machines, hospital equipment, the Internet, the electric grid, and so much more.

But here’s the deal: America invented these chips.  America invented these chips.  They powered NASA’s first Moon mission that President Kennedy inspired — here, in America.

Federal investment helped bring down the cost of making these chips, creating a market and an entire new industry. 

As a result, over 30 years ago, America had more than 30 percent of the global chip production. 

But then something happened — something happened: American manufacturing, the backbone of our economy, got hollowed out because companies began to move jobs and production overseas.  And as a result, today we’re down to barely 10 percent of the world’s chips, despite leading in chip research and design. 

And as we saw during the pandemic when factories — when factories that make these ships [sic] shut — chips shut down around the world, the global economy, literally, comes to a screeching halt. 

More Americans have learned the phrase “supply chain” and what it means.  Well, guess what?  The supply chain is going to start here and end here — in the United States.  (Applause.)  I’m not joking. 

For example, here in the United States, one third of the core inflation last year — the core inflation last year was due to higher prices of automobiles.  Why?  Because of the shortage of semiconductors that make these vehicles move. 

Folks, we need to make these chips here in America to bring down everyday cost and create good-paying American jobs.  And don’t take my word for it.  Listen to the leaders of IBM and across the country.  They’re making decisions right now about where to invest to produce these chips.  And they’re choosing America because they see we’re coming back, we’re leading the way. 

As I said, since I came to office, our economy has created 10 million jobs — 668 [thousand] manufacturing jobs — (applause) — proof that “Made in America” is no longer a slogan, it’s a reality.  And the CHIPS and Science Act makes historic investment in companies to build advanced manufacturing facilities here in America.

Since I signed it into law last summer, we’ve seen incredible progress.  Just here in Hudson Valley, IBM is investing $20 billion over the next 10 [years] to design and manufacture semiconductor, mainframe technology, and quantum computers. 

In Syracuse, the company Micron announced it’s going to invest $100 billion over the next 20 years to build factories that make special memory chips.  Don’t have to explain to you all what a memory chip is — those chips that store information on your smartphone, among other things. 

It’s going to create 50,000 jobs and create — create an increase in America’s share of the memory chips, increase it by 500 percent.  That would be the largest American investment of its kind ever, ever, ever, ever. 

And, folks, last month, I was outside Columbus, Ohio, where Intel is investing $20 billion to build a semiconductor factory on 100 [1,000] acres of land that I dubbed as the “field of dreams.”  It’s going to create 10,000 good-paying jobs — union jobs, I might add.  (Applause.)  And a significant number of those jobs, you do not need an advanced degree.  You do not need an advanced degree.  So you’re going to have people, who are usually wearing blue collars, who are going to be making an average $120,000 a year.  And it’s about time.

I want to remind everybody: I know I get criticized for being the most pro-labor President in history.  There’s a simple reason for that: They’re the single — no, they’re the si- — you’re the single-best trained, most competent workers in the world.  That’s the reason why.  (Applause.)

And, by the way, the middle class built this country, but unions built the middle class.  (Applause.)  That’s a fact. 

Look, GlobalFoundries and Qua- — and Qualcomm, they’ve announced a $4 billion project to produce chips in America that would otherwise have been made overseas.  Qualcomm — Qualcomm is one of the largest chip designers and planning to boost production by up to 50 percent in the next five years.

North — in North Carolina, Wolfspeed is investing $5 billion to make chips and devices for electric vehicles that’ll create 1,800 jobs by 2030 in the United States. 

And folks — folks, the future of the chips industry is going to be made in America.  That’s not hyperbole.  That’s a fact.  It’s going to be made in America.  And making these chips in America is going to create new businesses for countless small manufacturers and suppliers into the supply chain that’s going to thrive all because of this law. 

And many of these good-paying jobs don’t require, as I said, a college degree.  It matters.  All of this is in our economic interest, and it’s in our national security interest as well. 

Earlier this year, I went down to Lockheed’s factory in Alabama, where they’re making the Javelin missiles that we’re supplying to Ukraine to defend itself against Putin’s unprovoked war.  (Applause.)

Folks — and I’ve been able to cut off significant pieces of manufacturing needs they have to make their weapons they’re not getting from the United States.  But that’s a different story.

We need semiconductors not only make these Javelin missiles but also the weapons systems of the future that are going to rely even more on advanced chips.  Unfortunately, we produce zero percent of these advanced chips today.  Zero percent of these chips that we need today. 

China is trying to move way ahead of us in manufacturing them.  It’s no wonder, literally, the Chinese Communist Party actively lobbied against the CHIPS and Science Act — that I’ve been pushing — in the United States Congress.  The Communist Party of China was lobbying in the United States Congress against passing this legislation.  And unfortunately, some of our friends on the other team bought it.  

The United States has to lead the world in producing these advanced chips.  This law is going to makes sure that it will.  

And to be clear: The CHIPS and Science Act is not handing out blank checks to companies.  I’ve directed my administration — and I want you to listen to this — to be laser-focused on the guardrails that’s going to protect taxpayers’ dollars.  We’ll make sure that companies partner with unions, community colleges, technical schools, and offer training and apprenticeships. 

We’re going to make sure the work — small and minority-owned businesses get to participate.  We’re going to make sure that companies that take these taxpayers’ dollars do not turn around and make investments in China — investments that undermine our supply chains and national security.  (Applause.)  That’s a guarantee.  Because in this law, I have the power to take back any federal funding from these companies if they don’t meet these requirements.  That’s in the law.

The law requires that companies build these semiconductor facilities pay Davis-Bacon prevailing wages, and they do it here.  (Applause.)  And it’s going to ensure that tens of thousands of new construction jobs are created and high-paying jobs — and, more often, high-paying union jobs.  We’re talking about buildings facilities that are time — 10 times the size of a football field.  And this is just the construction side.  The construction side.    

We’re going to require companies to use these investments for workers and research and development, not to buy back stock or issue dividends.  (Applause.)  Let me say that again: You got to invest the money.  You can’t use it to buy back your stock.

Look, and finally, this law is about more than chips.  It’s about science as well. 

Decades ago, the United States used to invest 2 percent — 2 percent of our GDP in research and development that led us to create everything from the Internet to GPS.   We, the United States, invested in research and development.  Today, we invest less than 1 percent — about seven tenths of 1 percent. 

We used to rank number one in the world in research and development.  Today, we rank number nine. 

China ranks — was eight a decade ago.  China now is number two.  And other countries are closing in fast.

So the CHIPS and Science Act sets us on a path to move up again.  It boosts our research and development funding back up closer to 1 percent of our GDP — the fastest single-year [gain] in 70 years. 

And it’s going to make sure we lead the world in industries of the future, from quantum computing to artificial intelligence, advanced biotechnology.  Think of the things and the kind of investments we’re going to deliver: vaccines for cancers, cures for HIV, inventing the next big thing that hadn’t even been imagined yet. 

And here’s something else that really is important: We’re going to make sure that any company that uses federal research and development funding to invest in new technology has to make the product in America.  (Applause.)  In America.  I mean it.

That means we’ll invent it in America and make it in America.  And we’re going to make sure we include all of America.  We’re going to support ente- — entrepreneurs and technology hubs all across the country, including in Historically Black Colleges and Universities, minority — minority-serving institutions, Tribal colleges.

We’re going to tap into our greatest competitive advantage of our diverse and talented workforce: urban, rural, and suburban.

And, folks, I’ve asked many other business leaders this question, because this is — the other team who opposed me on this said this was the problem.  When the United States decides to invest considerable resources in a new industry that we need to build up, does it encourage businesses to get in the game or discourage them?  The answer is overwhelmingly: It encourages businesses to get in the game, including IBM.  Federal investments attract private-sector investments.  It creates jobs.  It creates industries.  And it demonstrates we’re all in this together.

During a trip to South Korea not long ago, I met with the chairman of the SK Group, the second-largest conglomerate in South Korea that makes everything from semiconductors to large-capacity batteries, to electric vehicle chargers, pharmaceuticals.  They’ve committed more than $50 billion in investments here in America, and they’re going to grow its U.S. workforce from 4,000 to 20,000 in just three years.

I believe the reason why companies like IBM are choosing to build in America is because we’re better positioned globally than we have been in any time in a long time.  This is not hyperbole.  We have the best and most productive workers in the world.  We have the best research universities in the world, a dynamic venture capital system, a rule of law that protects intellectual property. 

In addition, we wrote and passed the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law that I signed with the help of members of the Congress who are here today and their leadership. 

And we finally decided we’re going to move up from being ranked number 13 in the world in infrastructure to number 1.  Because guess what?  When you have the best infrastructure in the world, companies invest where the infrastructure is and get product to market faster and cheaper and more reliably. 

Ask any business leader — (applause) — ask any business leader what is one of the most important factors they consider when they’re deciding where to invest.  I promise you they’ll tell you it’s whether they have the means to transport product around the country and the world.  It’s whether they have and employees have a safe and thriving place to live.

The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law means better roads and bridges, ports and airports, clean water, high-speed Internet for every American.  And that’s going to create millions of jobs all by itself and make us more competitive worldwide.  It’s a game changer.  One trillion three hundred- — two hundred billion dollars for infrastructure. 

Let me close with this.  You know, I’ve had a great partner here with me and a great leader of this state who is creating jobs and making New York the hub of advanced manufacturing.  And it really does matter.  It really does matter, because that’s one of the reasons, I think, you have attracted some of the investment here from other major computer chip businesses that are going to — in the world and the United States.  It matters.  It matters.

This is about economic security, folks.  It’s about national security.  And it’s about good-paying jobs you can raise a family on.  Jobs now.  Jobs for the future.  Jobs in every part of our country. 

And that’s what we’re going to see here in this factory in the beautiful Hudson Valley: people of all ages, all races, all backgrounds — with advanced degrees to no degrees — working side by side, doing the most sophisticated manufacturing the world has ever seen. 

And they’re showing what I’ve always believed.  And I mean this from the bottom of my heart.  I’ve been saying this since I decided to run.  There’s nothing — nothing, nothing the United States is unable to do if we set our mind to it.  Nothing.  Nothing.  (Applause.)  And if we do it together.  I really mean it.

Your CEO and I were walking down to get to the first event, and we talked about it.  More is going to change for the better in the next 10 years than happened in the last 40 years.  We’re at an inflection point in world history where the changes that are going to take place in the next 10 are going to fundamentally alter the way in which we look at the world and our place in the world.  And that’s not hyperbole.  It’s real. 

And we are better positioned than any nation in the world to own the second quarter of the 21st century.  I really mean that.  And it’s because of companies like yours.  It’s because of innovation.  It’s because of all of your willingness to make it in America.

So God bless you all.  And may God protect our troops.  Thank you very much.  (Applause.) 

2:22 P.M. EDT

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