Biden to meet with CEOs to discuss Build Back Better agenda

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President Biden is set to meet with several corporate executives on Wednesday at the White House to discuss his Build Back Better proposal, a White House official told The Hill on Tuesday.

The meeting includes CEOs who support passing Build Back Better, according to the official, and Biden is expected to discuss with them how the agenda "will make the U.S. economy more competitive, increase worker productivity and workforce participation, lower inflation over the long-term, and strengthen business growth."

The meeting, which is slated to be in person, will include General Motors CEO Mary Barra, Ford CEO Jim Farley, Microsoft President Brad Smith and Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff.

"The private sector leaders will highlight what they see as the key benefits of BBB for the American economy and American business," the official said.

Biden conceded last week to potentially breaking up the sweeping climate and social spending package, acknowledging that some proposals won't survive and signaling his openness to exploring what a pared-down bill might look like.

The House passed a $2.2 trillion Build Back Better bill, but it stalled in the Senate, where it doesn't have support from moderate Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.). Manchin has pointed to the price tag and concerns that it may worsen inflation in opposing it.

Other CEOs included in the meeting on Wednesday are Thasunda Brown Duckett of TIAA, Barbara Humpton of Siemens Corporation, Tom Linebarger of Cummins, Enrique Lores of HP, Josh Silverman of Etsy, and Wendell Weeks of Corning. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo and climate adviser Gina McCarthy will also attend.

Farley, CEO of Ford, said in a statement that he is looking forward to meeting with Biden about the plan for the U.S. to lead the global transition to zero-emissions transportation.

"Ford is leading the EV [electric vehicle] revolution and breaking constraints to increase production of the all-electric versions of our most iconic and popular vehicles, like the F-150 Lightning arriving this spring. And there's more to be done," he said. "Strengthened consumer incentives will help get more drivers behind the wheels of EVs and help American workers lead the global transition to zero-emissions transportation."

General Motors, whose CEO will also be in the meeting, unveiled a nearly $7 billion investment in EV manufacturing sites in Michigan on Tuesday, a move Biden hailed as a sign of a "manufacturing comeback."

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) on Tuesday predicted that large portions of Biden's Build Back Better agenda can become law before the midterm elections, listing provisions such as universal early education, an ObamaCare expansion, billions of dollars for climate programs and a provision empowering Medicare to negotiate lower drug prices on behalf of seniors.

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