If he can get it through Congress, President Joe Biden is set to present a $6 trillion budget on Friday, funding his ambitious economic makeover in 2022 while plunging the US into record debt.
The president’s annual budget is primarily a wish list or a message about his goals. The ultimate decision on where money goes is made by Congress, and the present Congress has only the tiniest Democratic majority.
However, the vast plan demonstrates the White House’s resolve to put actual numbers on Biden’s massively ambitious push to unite the federal government and business in an existential battle for supremacy with China.
The Democrat, who is scheduled to appear at two public events later Friday, has already stated where the majority of the $6 trillion price tag should be spent.
One large piece would be a $2.3 trillion infrastructure bill that was originally proposed but has subsequently been reduced to $1.7 trillion in negotiations with Congress. Another $1.8 trillion would be spent on additional state-funded education and social services, all of which, according to Biden, would help to create a better workforce for the twenty-first century.
The Biden blueprint, according to The New York Times, would expand federal spending even more in the coming years, reaching $8.2 trillion in 2031.
According to the analysis, if the tax dollars spigots were opened that wide, deficits would exceed $1.3 trillion over the following decade.
The budget proposal is being released just before the long Memorial Day weekend and as Congress prepares to go on vacation for a week.
The timing may calm the immediate uproar on Capitol Hill, where many Democrats want Biden to use his majority in Congress to push through transformative legislation, but Republicans are stalling most of what the president proposes.
One area of contention is spending priorities.
Republicans, for example, are almost unified in their opposition to Biden’s broad definition of infrastructure, which includes internet technology, renewable energy, and social programs.
Even less agreement exists on how to pay for it all.
Biden wants to raise money by repealing a business tax reduction enacted by Republicans under Trump’s predecessor. He also wants to go after tax loopholes that the ultra-rich and major corporations take advantage of.
Republicans refuse to accept this, claiming that their own, more modest infrastructure proposals might be funded by reallocating already budgeted funds.
Despite the impasse — given the size of Biden’s mega-budget — the White House still has a potential ace up its sleeve in the Democratic Party’s small majority.
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