Joe Biden announces new social and environmental spending plan cut in half

Its amount was halved to convince the last recalcitrant. Outlines of the Build Back Better plan (“Build back better”), planning to finance ambitious social and environmental policies, were presented by the President of the United States, Joe Biden, Thursday, October 28.

“After months of difficult and intense negotiations, we have a framework agreement which I believe can be adopted”, he tweeted, in support ofa press release listing the main measures of his plan. This frame “Will create millions of jobs, grow the economy, invest in our nation and our people”, he added during a speech from the White House.

An agreement would represent a major political victory for the American president, who has invested part of his presidency on the adoption of large-scale investment plans to reform America.

Mr Biden went to Congress to push it to pass ” as quickly as possible “ this bill in the amount of 1,750 billion dollars (1,500 billion euros) over a decade, half less than what he initially envisaged. Congress must also validate a second plan of some 1,000 billion dollars intended to modernize the country’s infrastructure.

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White House points out that Mr. Biden heard “Comments from all parties” and “Negotiated in good faith” with centrist Senators Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema, the leadership of Congress as well as a “Wide range of members of Congress”. The voices of Mr. Manchin and Sinema are essential for the passage of these plans, because the Democratic majority in the Senate is so thin that a single dissonant voice is tantamount to a veto. These two senators have hitherto obstructed, judging the amount too high, and opposed the way to finance it, in particular by tax increases on companies or the wealthiest households.

“Nobody got everything they wanted”

The left wing of the party, for its part, criticized these concessions to the moderates. “I want to see a solid Build Back Better bill”, underlined Bernie Sanders, tempering the ambient optimism. The very progressive independent senator, in favor of more substantial spending, has always stressed that without an ambitious plan, there would be no agreement on the other infrastructure investment program.

“Nobody got everything they wanted, including me”, commented Joe Biden, who wants to post a major political victory. “We agree on most things” contained in the bill, added the Democratic leader of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi, adding that the debates on this document of nearly 2,500 pages would begin on Thursday afternoon.

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Mr. Biden and his administration have repeatedly emphasized the importance of these plans, arguing that the United States is losing its competitiveness and is seen as a poor student among advanced countries, whether in terms of education, environment or social safety net.

In a document published on his site, the White House notes that this plan would allow “For most American families to save more than half of their child care expenses” and “Will provide two years of free preschool for every 3 and 4 year old in America”. Today, the majority of schools in the country do not welcome children before the age of 5.

This plan also includes continuing child tax credits and expanding access to home care.

555 billion for the climate

The President of the United States also wishes to present to his international partners – in Italy, for the G20, as in Glasgow (Scotland), for the Conference of the Parties (COP26) on the climate – the image of a country committed to the energy transition and growth, as well as in the fight against social inequalities and tax evasion.

The White House thus emphasizes in his press release que le plan Build Back Better contient “The greatest effort [financier] fight against climate change in American history ”, or $ 555 billion.

If adopted, this plan would significantly reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) pollution, “Will reduce[it] consumer energy costs (…), will create[it] hundreds of thousands of high quality jobs and will[it] advancing environmental justice ”. It’s an investment « unique (…) in history “, it targets buildings, transport, industry, electricity, agriculture and water.

“The framework will put the United States on the right track to achieve its climate objectives, achieving by 2030 a reduction of 50% to 52% of GHG emissions below 2005 levels.”

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The White House maintains that this plan can be funded by “Large profitable companies” and Joe Biden assured Thursday that these expenses would not create an additional deficit. The bill therefore contains measures to ensure that these companies “Cannot reduce their tax bill to zero” and includes provisions for millionaires and billionaires to get more out of their hands.

On the other hand, it does not include the tax on the super-rich presented Wednesday, which supposed to tax the unrealized capital gains of billionaires, these dormant gains in the thick portfolios of stocks of the great American fortunes.

The World with AFP

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Joe Biden announces new social and environmental spending plan cut in half