Former Vice President Joe Biden visited the construction site of the bridge that will replace the Gerald Desmond Bridge where he took a brief tour of the site and met with local leaders on Thursday afternoon.
But Harris announced she was dropping out of the race in December after lackluster fundraising over the year. Garcia was joined by local state legislature representatives Assemblyman Patrick O’Donnell and Senator Lena Gonzalez.
Garcia praised Biden who was part of the Obama administration that helped fund the bridge replacement project and for his commitment to infrastructure during their time in office. The $1.3 billion bridge broke ground in 2013 as the Port of Long Beach sought to replace a bridge that was at the end of its natural life, but also replace it with one that could allow taller ships to enter the port complex.
The new bridge, which hasn’t yet been named, will provide about 50 feet more clearance than its predecessor.
“We’re very happy to have the Vice President here,” Garcia said. “He’s ready to lead our country on Day One and we’re just grateful for his leadership and to show him this great facility.”
This is Biden’s first trip to Long Beach during this election cycle as he and Senator Elizabeth Warren were absent from November’s state Democratic Convention hosted at the Long Beach Convention Center. According to the most recent FiveThirtyEight poll, Biden is polling first (22%) in California, slightly ahead of Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders (21.9%).
As the two made their way to the motorcade, Biden briefly responded to a reporter’s question about what Garcia’s endorsement meant to him saying that it “meant a lot.” Another reporter shouted what Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti’s endorsement meant which was announced hours before his visit to the bridge.
“Him as well,” Biden said as he continued walking away and waved.
Editor’s note: This story has been updated to reflect that the bridge replacing the Gerald Desmond Bridge has not yet been named.
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