Biden met with the union’s leadership, including IBEW President Lonnie Stephenson. He interacted with some workers during the short visit, declaring at one point that union members were the supporters who “brung me to the dance,” according to Bloomberg’s Jennifer Epstein.
The president brought sandwiches from a local Italian sub shop and spoke with the mother of one union worker by cell phone. He departed roughly 30 minutes after his arrival.
The union hall was a short ride away from Biden’s residence in Wilmington, Delaware, where he spent Labor Day weekend. The president flew to Delaware Friday from Louisiana, where he viewed the damage from Hurricane Ida.
Biden drew criticism from Republicans in recent days over his decision to travel home for Labor Day weekend despite the ongoing crisis in Afghanistan.
IBEW Local 313 was established in 1902 e ha 700 active members. The union’s workers have been assisting local communities that experienced damage in the hurricane by working on residential homes.
Biden has cultivated even closer ties with unions in recent months. In Aprile, he established a White House task force to explore ways to improve the ability of unions to collectively bargain with employers.