President Joe Biden boasted on Friday that the federal government was finally purchasing goods “Made in America” just weeks after buying coronavirus tests made in China.
“I made it clear, that when the federal government spends taxpayer dollars we buy American products. American products, made in America,” Biden said, adding there had only been “very few exceptions” to the rule.
The president commented on his “Buy American” efforts during a speech at the White House about the January jobs report.
“It’s always been the law, it’s very seldom ever followed,” he said, about the principal to ensure government purchases American-made products. “Now it’s a reality, not an empty promise.”
Biden did not mention the federal government signed a $1.28 billion contract with China’s Andon Health Co., Ltd. in January to purchase over $250 million coronavirus self-test kits.
At the time, China’s state-run Global Times celebrated China’s contribution to the United States as a propaganda victory, as shares of Andon Health stocks spiked after Biden’s announcement.
The White House defended the purchase of coronavirus tests from China, noting a shortage of tests produced in the U.S. due to “the understandable demand” in the country.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki said the testing shortage in the U.S. “required us purchasing some of those tests from China in order to meet that demand.”