Where is Biden today? Crystal Lake Mayor Haig Haleblian, McHenry college prepare for 1st visit from sitting president

Where is Biden today? Crystal Lake Mayor Haig Haleblian, McHenry college prepare for 1st visit from sitting president

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CRYSTAL LAKE, Ill. (WLS) — President Joe Biden will visit Crystal Lake Wednesday to pitch his American Families infrastructure plan to a part of Illinois where a slight majority voted for Donald Trump in the last election.

The details of the visit remain under wraps, but the community is buzzing with enthusiasm and pride before their first-ever visit from a sitting president.

“It’s awesome, absolutely awesome” said Mayor Haig Haleblian.

Many residents seem to agree.

“The fact that he wanted to come here to Crystal Lake says a lot about who I think Joe Biden is,” said resident Michael Zellmann. “He’s open, and I believe the people are willing to listen.”

Government helicopters took off from a field on the grounds of McHenry County College, as crews unloaded equipment into the auditorium in anticipation of the visit. Signs welcoming President Biden can be seen across the downtown area, but his agenda has yet to be revealed except for that one stop.

“I’m very excited about President Biden coming to Illinois. He is expected to talk about the American Families plan,” said Gov. JB Pritzker

“We are confident that the plan will help small businesses in the area, as well as working parents who are also business owners,” said Vanessa Baker, a small business owner.

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Biden will also highlight his plan to make college more affordable and plans to relieve student debt.

“I got some debt. President Joe if you wanna pay that off that would be amazing. Send it my way. I would gladly receive it,” said resident Jordan Tratscher.

The visit is important to McHenry County Democrats, too. While former President Donald Trump won McHenry County, vote tabulations show Biden won Crystal Lake, and easily.

“When you look at McHenry County we have historically been Republican, and Crystal Lake is an amazing community, and we are incredibly open to hearing what any politicians has to say, especially our president,” resident Michael Zellmann said.

Republican leaders, however, said they believe the president should visit Chicago and meet with Mayor Lori Lightfoot about addressing the issues of crime and violence.

“There is a crisis going on in that city, and it would be a dereliction of duty for him to fly over Chicago,” said RNC spokesman Paris Dennard.

Mayor Lightfoot confirmed meeting with President Biden is part of his agenda. She said common-sense gun control laws will be her first priority in their talks.

Some in Crystal Lake’s downtown hope the president swings by the Kaleidascoops Ice Cream shop. The owner of the clothes gallery next door is ready.

“When you’re out of town, how fun is it to bring something home for your wife?” said Sherree Rothstein.

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