COLUMBUS, Ga. (WRBL) – It was a historic day in the Chattahoochee Valley as President Joseph Biden and First Lady Dr. Jill Biden flew to Fort Benning on Air Force One before transferring to Marine One for a quick trip to Plains, Ga.
There the Bidens met with former President Jimmy Carter and Rosalynn Carter.
Biden made the trip to the Peach State after declaring Wednesday night in his first address to a joint session of Congress that “America is rising anew.” During the address, the President urged a $1.8 trillion investment in children, families and education.
Air Force One flew over Columbus on its way to Lawson Army Airfield on Fort Benning. On post, the Bidens met with Fort Benning officials, including Commander Maj. Gen. Patrick J. Donahoe and Command Sgt. Maj. Derrick Garner. The Bidens engaged in a brief conversation with Fort Benning leadership and their wives, Theresa Donahoe and Sheri Garner, before loading into Marine One and departing for Carter Regional Airport in Americus, Ga.
Gen. Donahoe told News 3 after meeting the President and First Lady, “It’s always an honor to meet the Commander in Chief and First Lady. And to have the opportunity to tell them how special Fort Benning is.”
Donahoe say the president’s reply: “It is a gem.”
The flight from Fort Benning to Americus took less than 20 minutes, putting the Bidens on the ground at 1:55 p.m. Students and staff from nearby South Georgia Technical College greeted the First Family.
The President and First Lady then joined the Presidential motorcade and, with a Georgia State Patrol escort, made their way to Plains, Ga. and ultimately to the Carter home. News 3 spoke with people who traveled as many as three hours to witness the historic scene, the first visit of a sitting President to Plains since Jimmy Carter occupied the White House. The Bidens and Carters met for about 45 minutes.
The relationship between Biden and Carter stretches back decades. Biden was one of the first U.S. Senators to support Carter’s White House run in 1976. Working together on international arms control during the Cold War, Biden represented the White House when he met with Soviet leaders to discuss new treaties. Carter, in turn, supported Biden’s White House bid in 2020 during a brief video played during the Democratic National Convention.
The President will wrap his Peach State visit with an evening rally at Gwinnett County’s Infinite Energy Center. The President is expected to highlight his accomplishments in his first 100 days in office. Biden is also expected to tout his American Families Plan and The American Jobs Plan. The American Families Plan is a proposal to expand access to early childhood education. The American Jobs Plan would invest i infrastructure improvements and green energy.
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