Long Beach City College
Long Beach, California

(September 13, 2021)

7:25 P.M. PDT

THE PRESIDENT:  Hello, Long Beach.  It’s good to be back.

AUDIENCE:  Joe!  Joe!  Joe!

THE PRESIDENT:  Thank you.  Well, I’ll tell you what —

AUDIENCE:  Joe!  Joe!  Joe!

THE PRESIDENT:  Thank you.  Thank you.  You all have been standing a long time. 

And, I tell you what, you know, the governor and I have a lot in common: We both married way up.  (Laughter.)  Jennifer, thank you for the welcome.  Thank you for what you do.  And thank you for becoming friends with Jill.

I’m Jill’s husband, Joe Biden.  (Applause.) 

THE PRESIDENT:  And, folks —

AUDIENCE MEMBER:  That’s my President!  I love you, Joe!

THE PRESIDENT:  May- — (laughs) — Mayor Garcia, it’s good to be back in your town.  (Applause.)  Last time out here, we were talking about infrastructure.  Now we got a lot of money coming this way.  (Applause.)  We got a lot working.  We got an infrastructure bill that we passed.  And we’re going to do an awful lot more to build this incredible, incredible economy. 

You know, someone was saying to me earlier today: the most diverse state in the nation.  Matter of fact, I think it was your senator.  The most diverse state in the nation.  The most different state in the nation.  The biggest state in the nation.  And has the — one of the largest economies in the world.  And no one sees any inconsistency there.  It’s because we’re diverse you have the largest economy in the world.  (Applause.)

And, Senator Padilla, thank you for your leadership in the United States Senate.  You’re doing an incredible job.

And I know she was here last week, but I’ve got to give a shout-out to my favorite daughter of California who’s always taking — talking about you all — talks about you all the time, like I talk about Delaware.  She loves you.  Matter of fact, she thinks you’re the only state in the nation.  (Laughter.)  Vice President Kamala Harris.  (Applause.)

And, of course, the reason I’m here and you all are here is to thank and support our friend, Governor Gavin Newsom — one of the best governors in the country.  (Applause.)

California, I’m not sure you know it, but if you didn’t know it, you should: The eyes of the nation — this is not hyperbole — the eyes of the nation are on California.  Because the decision you’re about to make isn’t just going to have a — isn’t just going to have a huge impact on California.  It’s going to reverberate around the nation and, quite frankly — not a joke — around the world.

And here’s why:  All of you know that last year I got to run against the real Donald Trump. 

AUDIENCE:  Booo —

THE PRESIDENT:  (Makes the sign of the cross.)  (Laughter.)

Well, this year — this year, the leading Republican running for governor is a — the closest thing to a Trump clone that I’ve ever seen in your state.  (Laughter.)

No, I really mean it.  And he’s leading the other team.  He’s the clone of Donald Trump.  Can you imagine him being governor of this state?

AUDIENCE:  Nooo —

THE PRESIDENT:  You can’t let that happen.  (Applause.)  There’s too much at stake. 

And here is why it’s so important for you all to vote “no” on a recall: First, voting no, we’ll be protecting California from Trump Republicans trying to block us from beating this pandemic.  (Applause.)  

COVID-19 — Gavin Newsom has had the courage to lead, stand up for science.  For the very thing he’s been one of the leading governors in the nation, protecting his people and vaccinating his state.

Meanwhile — (applause) — meanwhile, we see something else in parts of America.  Right now, there are certain Republican governors, like the governor of Mississippi, who are tal- — and talking to me about being dictatorial about demanding that people get vaccinated or tested.  People are doing everything they can to block or undermine the lifesaving mandates we proposed: putting their people at risk, putting their children at risk, putting their states at risk. 

And here’s the worst thing: For these Republican governors, it isn’t about public health, about the health of the people; it’s about politics.

Look, folks, just look at the hypocrisy: The same governors who are attacking me and your governor for COVID-19 mandates are in states with some of the strictest vaccine mandates for children attending school in the whole country. 

Talk about inconsistency: In Mississippi, children are required to be vaccinated against measles, mumps, rubella, chickenpox, hepatitis B, polio, tetanus, and more.  It’s a state requirement.  But now, in the midst of this pandemic that has taken over 650,000 lives, I propose a mandate for COVID-19 vaccines and it’s an “outrage,” it’s an “infringement on freedom.”

Look, folks, we don’t need politics in this battle against COVID.  We need science.  We need courage.  We need leadership.  We need Gavin Newsom — (applause) — a governor who follows science, who’s got the courage to do what’s right and who’ll lead. 

(Coughs.)  And I apologize for coughing.

AUDIENCE MEMBER:  Five more years, Gavin!  (Applause.)

THE PRESIDENT:  Last week, I laid out a six-part plan for the fall to beat this pandemic.  First, vaccinate the unvaccinated with new vaccine requirements.  (Applause.)  Two, protect the vaccinated.  (Applause.)  Three, keep children safe in school.  And four, increase testing and masking.  And keep our economy going strong.  And take care of people with COVID-19.  That’s what the science tells us.  We have to beat the Delta variant of COVID-19.

Gavin will be a governor who will help us finish the job.  (Applause.)

Folks, send a message to the nation: Courage matters.  Leadership matters.  Science matters.  Vote to keep Gavin.  Get vaccinated to save lives.  (Applause.)

Second, by voting no, you’ll be keeping a governor who respects women instead of — (applause) — instead of someone who wrote that women know less about politics and economics than men. 

AUDIENCE:  Booo —

THE PRESIDENT:  He hadn’t met my wife.  (Laughter.) 

Look, if you have any doubt about how important it is to have Gavin, who respects women’s right to — just take a look at what’s happening in states like Texas.  They just passed a law empowering complete strangers to become bounty hunters, going after women who exercise their right to choose.

AUDIENCE:  Booo —

THE PRESIDENT:  A law the United States Supreme Court refused to stop. 

Now other states say they’re looking to replicate the Texas law.  If you don’t think women’s rights are under assault, you’re not looking. 

California, keep Gavin Newsom and send a message to the nation.  (Applause.)  Women are to be respected and their rights protected. 

Third, by voting no, you’ll be protecting California from another Trump climate denier who said global warming is, quote, a “crock” and depicts it as a myth. 

Look, it’s hard to believe there’s any climate deniers left in America, but let me tell you something: there are.  The last place you want someone like that is in the governor’s office in California.  (Applause.) 

You all see what’s happening: wildfires burning 2 million acres of California this year alone; 5 million acres have burned — 5.9 [million] in the region.  That’s bigger than the state — entire state of New Jersey, and it’s a big state. 

The governor and I were just in Sacramento for a briefing on the Caldor fire — the Caldor fire. 

Last week, I saw the destruction and the death caused by Hurricane Ida in New York, New Jersey, and Louisiana. 

Folks, extreme weather is here.  The climate crisis isn’t going away; it’s getting worse.  We have to deal with it, not deny it. 

So, California, you’ve got to keep Gavin Newsom as governor — (applause) — and send a message to the nation that we have to deal with the climate crisis now.  We can’t wait any longer.

When I got elected President, I immediately rejoined the climate Paris — the Paris Climate Accord.  (Applause.)

Just since we put that together in our administration — in Barack’s administration — just since then, everything has collapsed even further.  We don’t have much time.  Not a joke.  We’re talking about 9 to 10 years before we pass the point of no return.  And si- —

AUIDENCE MEMBER:  (Inaudible.)

THE PRESIDENT:  You — our children need it.  The planet needs it.  (Applause.) 

Look, fourth, by voting no, you’ll be standing up for a governor who protects workers rather than one who believes there shouldn’t be — I can’t believe this guy — (laughter) — there shouldn’t be a minimum wage? 

AUDIENCE:  Booo —

THE PRESIDENT:  The leading Republican candidate thinks the minimum wage should be zero. 

AUDIENCE:  Booo —

THE PRESIDENT:  Look, working people have taken it on the chin too long.  We need leaders like Gavin who will respect them, hear them, fight for them.  (Applause.) 

To me, it’s pretty basic: If you’re working a 40-hour week, you shouldn’t be living in poverty.  (Applause.)  That’s why I support a $15 minimum wage.  Gavin is leading the way in California.  (Applause.)

I’m so tired of trickle-down economics.  It’s about time we build from the bottom up and the middle out.  (Applause.) 

So, California, keep Gavin and send a message: It’s time to give working people just a fighting chance.  They have never, ever, ever, ever, ever let the country down.  All they want is just an even shot.  They have never let the country down. 

Folks, I can go on, but here’s the deal — I’m going to make this a simple as I can: You either keep Gavin Newsom as your governor — (applause) — or you’ll get Donald Trump.

AUDIENCE:  Booo —

THE PRESIDENT:  It’s not a joke.  A Republican governor blocking progress on COVID-19, who is also anti-woman, anti-worker, a climate denier, who doesn’t believe in choice. 

AUDIENCE:  Booo —

THE PRESIDENT:  The choice should be absolutely clear: Gavin Newsom.  (Applause.)  You have a governor who has the courage to lead.  (Applause.) 

In Gavin, you have a governor who shares the state’s values.  In Gavin, you have a governor to make sure

Donald Trump’s dark, destructive, divisive politics never finds a place in California.  (Applause.)

So, please — not a joke — on behalf of the people of Delaware and Pennsylvania and Minnesota and all across America: Don’t take anything for granted.

If you’re registered, you’ve got a ballot in the mail.  If you haven’t opened it, open it, mark “no,” and put it in the mailbox tonight.  (Applause.)

If you want to vote in person, make sure you know where you’re going to vote in your county. 

AUDIENCE:  Vote!  Vote!  Vote!

THE PRESIDENT:  And if you’ve already voted, make sure your family and friends are voting tomorrow.  (Applause.) 

California — I mean this sincerely — the eyes of the nation are on you.  I’m not joking.  I’m not joking about that.  You’ve got to vote no on the recall.  Keep Gavin as governor.  The rest of America is counting on you, and so am I.  (Applause.)

God bless you all.  And may God protect our troops.  Thank you, thank you, thank you.  (Applause.)  Thank you.

7:40 P.M. PDT

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