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Biden to Make First Visit to Arizona After Nearly Two Years In Office

December 1, 2022

By Corinne Murdock |

President Joe Biden will make his first visit to Arizona, after nearly two years in office. 

The president will come to north Phoenix to celebrate the development of the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) plant. The foreign company is scheduled to begin its Phoenix operations in 2024. 

The Biden administration has a keen interest in domestic semiconductor manufacturing — the president signed the CHIPS and Science Act in August, the day after the FBI raid on former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home. Senators Mark Kelly and Krysten Sinema focused on the act’s passage rather than the raid. The pair championed the legislation as means of improving the flagging economy.

The closest Biden came to visiting was last February. Biden, along with Vice President Kamala Harris, engaged in a virtual tour of an Arizona State University (ASU) vaccination site at State Farm.

Former President Donald Trump first visited Arizona as president in August 2017, several weeks after the Charlottesville, Virginia “Unite the Right” protest after which several counter-protesters were run over and killed. He visited again in October 2018.

Harris has yet to visit the state, either. Apart from the virtual ASU tour, the closest the vice president came to visiting Arizona was a trip to the Arizona-Nevada border along Lake Mead.

The last time the vice president came to the state was in October 2020 on her campaign trail. Harris visited Tucson and Phoenix. 

Harris remains absent from the state, despite designation as border czar and Arizona being one of the states hardest hit by the border crisis under their administration. To date, the vice president has only made one border trip to Texas, after much resistance. Legislators and pundits criticized that visit, however, contending that Harris made a brief stop at a Border Patrol station miles from the site of the border crisis. 

A detailed record of Biden’s public calendar is available here. The LA Times maintains an open-source data archive of Harris’ public calendar. 

Although no border crisis existed at the time, Vice President Mike Pence visited Arizona multiple times in 2019. In April of that year, he addressed a controversial razor wire topping the border wall in Nogales. He came in March to speak with the National Association of Manufacturers and tour the Drug Enforcement Agency facility and returned in October to visit the Caterpillar manufacturing site.

Prior to that, Pence visited Arizona several other times to visit with Governor Doug Ducey and other lawmakers, including his stumping for former Republican Senator Martha McSally. 

Corinne Murdock is a reporter for AZ Free News. Follow her latest on Twitter, or email tips to corinne@azfreenews.com.

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