Trump campaign rally will spotlight airport upgraded with funds from law Biden passed - TAI News
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Terminal concourse at MBS International Airport (Wikimedia Commons).

On April 24, former President Donald Trump’s presidential campaign announced plans to hold a rally at MBS International Airport in Freeland, Michigan, on May 1.

Trump had repeatedly promised while campaigning for president in 2016 that he would pass infrastructure legislation to upgrade sites such as the airport, located in Saginaw County.

However, he never fulfilled that promise, and when the airport did  receive a federal grant of over $5.6 million from the Department of Transportation for upgrades in July 2023, it was funded by the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, which President Joe Biden signed into law in 2021.

An award of more than $5.8 million was given for upgrades to Bishop International Airport in Flint.

The infrastructure law provided $15 billion for airport infrastructure needs throughout the United States and over $212 million in grants for Michigan airports has been announced so far.

“The awarded funds will significantly improve the overall airport infrastructure, ensuring that we continue to provide a world-class experience for our passengers, while prioritizing safety and sustainability,” James Canders, the airport director at MBS, said in a statement published on the website of Democratic Sen. Debbie Stabenow. Canders thanked Stabenow and Democratic Sen. Gary Peters for their support in securing the funds.

MBS International will use the grant to rehabilitate its runway and to install a runway visual guidance system.

Air Force One landed at MBS International in March when Biden visited the area for a campaign event.

Biden has been critical of the failure of Trump in his time in office, from 2017 to January 2021, and of congressional Republicans to pass infrastructure legislation.

“Guess what? The great real estate builder, the last guy, he didn’t build a damn thing. Under my predecessor, infrastructure week became a punchline. On my watch, infrastructure has been a decade, and it’s a headline,” Biden said in a September 2023 speech.

Trump has criticized the infrastructure law, and, according to the Washington Post, said at a 2021 event: “I love all the House Republicans. Well, actually I don’t love all of you. I don’t love the 13 that voted for Biden’s infrastructure plan.”

Both Trump and Biden have focused on Michigan as a key swing state necessary to win the presidential election. Saginaw County has traditionally voted for the Democratic nominee, but Trump won the election there in 2016.

In 2020, Biden defeated Trump in Saginaw County by a margin of 303 votes. Biden also won in the rest of the state and was awarded its electoral votes.

Trump has falsely claimed that he won the 2020 election and is currently being prosecuted in federal court and in Georgia on charges connected with his role in attempts to overturn the election results.

Allies of Trump who attempted to submit a fake slate of electors for the election are being prosecuted in Michigan.

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The Michigan Independent is a project of American Independent Media, a 501(c)(4) organization whose mission is to use journalism to educate the public, giving them the information they need about local and federal issues.