The Biden team announces $ 1.75T spending package, defends cuts as tough but necessary

Cabinet members on Sunday proclaimed what is left of President Joe Biden’s so-called “human infrastructure” legislation of $ 1.75 trillion, and defended what has been cut as a victim to end negotiations.

The president announced Thursday that he and Democrats in Congress had reached a framework for his domestic policy package but were still seeking support from key colleagues in the 50-50 Senate. Paid family leave and other provisions were removed after negotiations with two moderate Democratic senators, Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Krysten Sinema of Arizona, none of whom have yet publicly expressed support for the bill.

Secretary of State Pete Buttigieg, on CNN’s State of the Union, was reminded by host Dana Bash that he, as a federal employee with newborn twins, recently took advantage of paid leave.

She asked Buttigieg why Biden could not find support in his own party to close the agreement with family benefits included for all Americans.

“Well, look, it’s something we believe in. I believe in it. Clearly, it’s personal to me,” the secretary said of paid family leave. “The same goes for the president. And that’s something we will continue to push for. But let’s talk about what’s in this bill.”

Buttigieg listed the bill’s selling points, including a $ 12,500 rebate on electric vehicles, extended preschool access for 3- and 4-year-olds, and an extension of a childcare tax deduction that he said could benefit nine out of 10 U.S. families.

“When we pass this bill, we will have delivered the most important pro-family legislation of my lifetime,” Buttigieg said. “The biggest expansion in healthcare since [Affordable Care Act] itself. The most we have ever done on climate change. And concrete improvements, literally, on roads, bridges, ports, airports and more. “

Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm, who spoke with host Chuck Todd on NBC’s Meet the Press, denied that Democrats had “overlived and underdelivered” on the bill. She also downplayed progressive opposition, saying the Progressive Caucus voted unanimously in support of the framework on Friday.

“The president campaigned and said, ‘Compromise is not a dirty word,'” she said. “You are not so unrealistic as to think that the president is getting everything he wants.”

Biden’s proposal would be paid for by imposing a new 5% additional tax on income over $ 10 million a year and introducing a new 15% corporate minimum tax, in line with his plans not to have new taxes on those earning less than $ 400,000 a year. year, officials said. A special “billionaire’s tax” was not included.

Revenue to help pay for the package would also come from rolling some of the Trump administration’s tax cuts back in 2017 along with intensified enforcement by IRS tax evaders.

“We are the closest we’ve ever been, and the President is convinced that this framework that we are presenting can pass Parliament and the Senate and come to his desk for signature,” Buttigieg said.

With AP

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