This upcoming week, First Lady Jill Biden will make a trip to Bethel, Alaska, the Anchorage Daily News reports.
Per the outlet:
The trip will be the first time Biden visits Bethel and will mark the first time any first lady has traveled to the Southwest Alaska hub city . . .
To be clear, though, it is not the first time that a first lady has visited Alaska.
Melania Trump - the former first lady - visited Alaska in 2017. She stopped at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson and met with military families.
Jill Biden, herself, has also visited Alaska - specifically Anchorage - back in July 2021 while en route to the Tokyo Olympics. During that visit, Biden made two stops: Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson and the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium. And, during those stops, Biden, among other things, pushed COVID-19 vaccinations upon the locals.
This time, Biden is heading to Bethel. The visit is scheduled to take place on Wednesday, May 17, 2023.
As for what Biden will be doing there, Alaska Public Media reports that the first lady is "on a mission to highlight the achievements of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law of 2021."
The outlet adds, "Her focus is on the expansion of broadband in the region."
The White House is specifically referring to this as the "Tribal broadband project."
The White House states:
The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law invests more than $13 billion directly to Tribal communities to provide affordable high-speed internet, safer roads and bridges, modern wastewater and sanitations systems, clean drinking water, reliable and affordable electricity, and good paying jobs.
The first lady will apparently be focusing on the "high-speed internet" part of the plan, which looks to bring broadband connectivity to Native American communities throughout the country.
Biden will be joined on the trip by U.S. Rep. Mary Peltola (D-AK), the first Native to be elected to Congress.
Peltola, in anticipation of the first lady's visit, published a press release on Saturday in which she extolled Biden.
I’m proud we have a First Lady who is a real advocate for education and health care access. These are issues that affect every Alaskan and every American. I am glad that she has chosen to visit Bethel to see firsthand our unique way of life in Western Alaska. I want this to be an opportunity to demonstrate some of the challenges faced by rural communities in our state.
It is unclear whether Biden has anything else on her agenda for her Alaska visit.