It “won’t cost anything,” Joe Biden promised not long ago of his $3.5 trillion spend and tax bill. On top of that lie, cautions the WSJ, don’t believe reports that Democrats are working hard to pare back their $3.5 trillion spend and tax bill.
What they’re really doing is working hard to pack $4 trillion in new programs into a $2 trillion disguise that sounds less radical than it is.
… so far it looks like the White House is continuing to accommodate progressive demands and then bludgeon swing-district Members to go along.
From Progressive Leader Rep. Ro Khanna (D., Calif.):
“Overall, almost every priority is included.”
Previously, President Biden and Speaker Pelosi indicated they would prefer to fully fund fewer programs. Under progressive pressure, though, once again they have retreated.
Democrats, according to the WSJ, have dropped only two programs – entitlement for community college and a nationwide renewable fuel mandate – from their original plan:
CC Already Subsidized
- Community college is one of the least expensive at some $120 billion over 10 years, and many states already subsidize it.
Carbon Tax Disguised as Regulation
- Killing Clean Electricity Performance Program (CEPP) is significant. It would force all states to meet a renewable fuel standard whether they want it or not. It is expressly designed to eliminate coal and raise the cost of natural-gas electric power. It’s essentially a carbon tax disguised as regulation.
Credit West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin for slaying this monstrosity, if it really is dead.
So Much for the Good News
Democrats want to retain every other big-ticket entitlement in fiscal drag.
The biggest trick is a false sunset. News reports say the child allowance of $3,000 or $3,600 will last for only one year instead of five as in the House bill. This will cost $120 billion instead of $556 billion.
- Child Allowance
Democrats plan to renew the child allowance ad infinitum. Its real cost over 10 years is $1 trillion and another trillion the decade after that. This is a huge addition to the structural deficit—an entitlement for the middle-class without a work requirement—that will eventually be financed by higher taxes.
The ObamaCare subsidy expansion would reportedly last three years, but that’s also a phony sunset. Paid family leave might be cut to four weeks from 12, but eventually it will grow to 12 or more and extend beyond maternity and paternity leave to elder care and more.
- Expanding Medicare Coverage
Bernie Sanders’s Medicare expansion to cover dental care as a pilot or more limited program. That could pretend to save $260 billion. But do you think a benefit provided to some seniors won’t soon be provided to all? Any program would create a political lobby of dental groups and others to make it universal.
A Whopper of a Ponzi Scheme
As the talks and leaks continue, the WSJ advises readers to follow the programs closely rather than the top-line budget number that is sure to be phony.
What matter are the new entitlements that will grow future spending and corrode the incentive to work, and the taxes that will reduce economic growth. Most of the rest is spin.
If you’re willing to fight for Main Street America, click here to sign up for the Richardcyoung.com free weekly email.