President Joe Biden to announce creation of McCain Library while in Tempe

Sep 28, 2023, 8:55 AM | Updated: 6:21 pm

PHOENIX – President Joe Biden will announce the creation of a library dedicated to late Arizona political icon John McCain during his speech in Tempe on Thursday.

Biden flew into Phoenix on Wednesday night and was scheduled to speak about the state of democracy at the Tempe Center for the Arts late Thursday morning.

The president will announce the use of American Rescue Plan funding to build the McCain National Library in Tempe, according to a press release from Arizona Gov. Katie Hobbs’ office.

Along with the library and archives, plans for the multi-purpose facility include a visitors center, conference center and an Arizona home for the McCain Institute.

“It is fitting to honor a statesman of Sen. McCain’s caliber with this federally funded library,” McCain Institute Executive Director Evelyn Farkas said in a press release.

“The McCain Library will be an outstanding resource for the McCain Institute, Arizona State University and the wider-Tempe community. We are proud to be a part of this effort.”

Despite political differences, Biden and McCain were close friends during their time together in the Senate. Biden delivered a eulogy during the 2008 Republican presidential nominee’s funeral in 2018.

“I have come to honor the McCain Institute and Library because they are home to a proud Republican who put country first,” Biden plans to say during Thursday’s speech, according to excerpts released by the White House. “Our commitment should be no less because democracy should unite all Americans – regardless of political affiliation.”

How often has Biden been to Arizona as president?

This is Biden’s third trip to Arizona since he became president. More visits to the battleground state are likely in the runup to the 2024 election.

In August of this year, Biden was in northern Arizona to designate a new national park in the Grand Canyon area.

In December 2022, the president toured the site of the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company factories under construction in north Phoenix while touting his economic plan.

After Thursday’s speech, Biden will attend a campaign reception event in Phoenix.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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President Joe Biden to announce creation of McCain Library while in Tempe