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Graves and Colleagues Label Supply Chain Crisis as Another Poor Decision That Was Avoidable

October 21, 2021
Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Congressman Garret Graves (South Louisiana) joined colleagues in a letter urging President Biden to reconsider policy positions that are delaying the movement of goods and services, idling our ports, causing bare shelves in stores and driving up costs.

“This supply chain crisis was entirely preventable. Whether lingering COVID unemployment, incentivizing NOT working, vaccine-related firings, increasing energy costs, and others, the Biden Administration’s flawed policies are hurting the supply chain. We have to get folks off the sidelines and involved in building America’s future instead of continuing to incentivize staying home. This isn’t what made America great.  We have now spent six months arguing over how much to spend on human infrastructure instead of addressing real infrastructure problems and real solutions which could have prevented this crisis. Right here in Louisiana - our ports and waterways connect dozens of states to global commerce and instead of dredging and deepening our waterways, this Administration’s policies would defund future improvements made to the Houma Navigation Canal, Port Fourchon, Bayou Lafourche, the Mississippi River and more. Rather than building new bridges, we are diverting billions of dollars to fund foreigners that have illegally come into the United States.  To those of you that aren’t getting your goods and services on time or your gas and grocery prices have skyrocketed – this is another direct result of poor decision-making,” Graves said. “Louisiana is the only state in the nation with six class one rail lines, five of the top ports in the nation, and six interstates. We are a major importer of goods and services and one of the nation's top export states. We have to address the supply chain crisis nationwide immediately or it will begin to have a larger impact right here at home for our households and local economies. Without aggressive action, the Grinch is going to love this Christmas.”

Click here for a PDF of the full letter, or see below for excerpts:

“We must address the global supply chain and ports crisis before Congress even considers additional social spending and taxation legislation. Our priority right now should be strengthening our Nation’s economy and increasing our global competitiveness. The policies of your Presidency and party’s leaders in Congress are exacerbating or simply ignoring the underlying supply chain crisis. These policies include the mishandling of the COVID response in ways that are prolonging unemployment and worker shortages across the economy, to your push for a multi-trillion-dollar spending spree that is driving up prices of everything from gas to groceries. These efforts only serve to weaken American competitiveness and shrink our economy, and they will certainly ensure that this Christmas will not be merry.”

“The current supply chain crisis exposes how close to its limit our transportation system operates. There is little redundant capacity. Once bottlenecks develop, cargo backs up and remains stranded offshore on ships that overcrowd the coastline, creating additional safety and environmental risks. For example, clustering a large number of container ships waiting to be unloaded increases the risk of large anchors damaging our underwater infrastructure, such as pipelines. This unfortunately was likely the case with the recent Huntington Beach oil spill.”

“Your Administration must step up for American workers and businesses by halting your reckless tax and spending plan currently pending before Congress. We request that you stop the litany of harmful regulatory actions that are driving up energy costs and to stop disarming the same American businesses you are asking to bail you out with vaccine mandates and excessive benefits that are disincentivizing work. While you might not be able to save this holiday season, you can reverse course and prevent further economic damage. Further consideration of your massive expansion of social spending, paid for by anticompetitive tax increases on small businesses and families, only stands to worsen the supply chain crisis. We urge you to call on your Congressional allies to halt discussions on a budget reconciliation bill that aims to reshape the social fabric of this country and instead work on real infrastructure solutions that focus on moving goods and people safely and efficiently throughout our great country and around the world.”