Biden Rallies Lawmakers to Support Budget BillAugust 16, 2021
President Biden held a lunchtime rally on July 14, 2020, as lawmakers start hashing out a $3.5 trillion budget. While a final vote could be months away, every Democratic lawmaker must buy into the plan entirely if they will overcome Republican opposition. The budget would extend the reach of public education and health care, increase taxes on the rich and protect the warming planet.
Bernie Sanders on Budget Bill
According to a statement released by his office, Chairman of the Budget Committee Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont, sees this as a pivotal moment in American history. He stresses that it will be a very long process.
Manchin Taking Wait and See Attitude
West Virginia’s Senator Joe Manchin III, who often sides with the Democrats, says that he wants to see how the plan plays out over the next several months. He says that his main concerns will be how new projects will be paid for and how the budget will keep America competitive globally.
If the two independent senators and every Democratic senator can be persuaded to pass the bill, then no Republican votes will be needed.
Key Budget Bill Elements
The bill, which will likely emerge in September, may contain several key elements, including expanding Medicare and more benefits for those purchasing Obamacare. It would extend public education to include prekindergarten and the first two years of college for everyone. Overseas entities doing business in the U.S. would have to pay a more significant tax burden. Capital gains and inheritance taxes would also rise.
The budget bill would not include funding proposed under a separate bill to improve the nation’s infrastructure. The infrastructure bill which passed the United States House of Representatives also has key provisions for protecting the environment. Under that proposed legislation, $312 billion would go to the transportation infrastructure, including public transportation, while $73 billion for power, $65 billion for broadband and $55 billion for water infrastructure.
If Biden can keep the two independent senators happy with the bill, he may get the budget he desires. He must stop any senator from his party from opposing the legislation.