By Felicia Jordan, Taylor Weiter, Taylor Nimmo
WCPO Channel 9
HAMILTON, Ohio — President Joe Biden visited the Tri-State Friday to meet with local manufacturing leaders in Hamilton.
Biden spoke Friday afternoon from United Performance Metals in Hamilton, where he toured the facility to see new additive manufacturing technologies at work. Additive manufacturing is the industrial production name for 3D printing, an industry the President lauded as necessary to the future of manufacturing.
President Biden was introduced by Ohio Senators Rob Portman and Sherrod Brown, who are working on a bipartisan bill, the Bipartisan Innovation Act, which is designed to create more jobs and boost domestic manufacturing. Versions of the bill have passed both the House and Senate, and now a conference committee will work to resolve any differences.
During his speech, Biden touted the bill and encouraged lawmakers to pass the bill and send it to his desk.
“We’re going to bury the label Rust Belt,” said President Biden.
He said the war in Ukraine and the growth of China as a manufacturing powerhouse have shown that America cannot compete economically if manufacturing doesn’t return to the country. He added that supply chain issues have driven up inflation and the cost of goods for Americans, something that he said won’t happen if manufacturing plants return to the U.S. and break the country’s dependence on foreign manufacturing.
“We’ve got to up our game, it’s a simple proposition, and if we do, everyone is going to win,” said President Biden.
To further promote the bill and his own efforts to revitalize manufacturing in the U.S., he used the example of Intel, which is already set to build dual production facilities in Licking County, a $20 billion investment. If the Bipartisan Innovation Act passes, President Biden said Intel is likely to increase that investment to $100 billion.
“Imagine what that’s going to do for Ohio, let alone Columbus,” he said. “It will nail down for generations the leadership of this state like it used to be.”
He touted the industry of 3D printing, like that performed by United Performance Metals, which he said will help lower overhead costs for other manufacturing industries, including reducing energy consumption and lead times. Lowering the cost of manufacturing in the U.S. will encourage growth in the manufacturing sector, bringing back crucial jobs, he said.
“If we’re going to compete for jobs of the future, we need to level the playing field with our competitors,” said President Biden.
He cited projects like the Intel plant, new projects slated to break ground in Cleveland and the investments GE Aviation has made in Cincinnati as signs of success that manufacturing is already returning to Ohio.
“I’ve never been more optimistic about America than I am today,” said President Biden. “Not because I’m President, but because people are waking up. It’s a new time. Because of my economic strategy, companies and jobs are coming home again. We’re making Buy America a reality, not just a slogan.”
The first metal additive printer in the United States was in Cincinnati. GE, which started using metal 3D printing about a decade ago, uses similar technology as United Performance Metals.
“Additive is a new technology, but really a lot of the development of metal additive printing has started here in Cincinnati,” said Chris Schuppe, GE Additive’s general manager of engineering and technology. “GE Additive has really grown out of that initial, you know, one machine and one supplier … GE has really grown from that to where they are today as a world-recognized, world leader in metal additive manufacturing.”
Schuppe, who works at the GE office in West Chester, said it’s created many high technology jobs in the Cincinnati area.
“We have over 200 employees that work every day on metal 3D printing, and are really advancing the state of the art of and the ability to do that here locally,” Schuppe said.
Officials said the program will help increase employment and protect against disruptions caused by global supply chain issues.
“It’s exciting,” Schuppe said of Biden’s visit. “Ten years ago, a lot of people didn’t even know what metal additive manufacturing was. Now to see the President of the United States supporting not only the advancement of the technology but the adoption of the technology down into small and medium enterprises is really exciting to see.”