President Biden initially introduced his new $2 trillion infrastructure plan back on March 31. As his party pushes forward, what is still standing in their way (https://thehill.com/homenews/house/547828-five-hurdles-democrats-face-to-pass-an-infrastructure-bill?rl=1)?
Bipartisan support: Biden has said that he wants this bill to pass with support from Republicans. He recently hosted a bipartisan group to discuss the plan at the White House. That being said, some within his party are concerned that Republicans will look to dilute the bill if they are going to sign it.
Tax rate: This new bill would raise the corporate tax rate from 21% to 28%. For the more progressive part of the party, this number is too low. More moderate Democrats are concerned that this is too high. Almost all members of the Business Roundtable have expressed concern about the negative effects of a tax hike.
SALT: Democrats are looking to lift the caps on federal deductions imposed during former President Trump’s 2017 tax cuts. However, many within leadership are concerned about the pushback if this happens.
Immigration Reform: While it is not directly related to infrastructure, many Democrats, especially in the progressive wing of the party, are looking to reform immigration laws, providing clearer opportunities for citizenship. This comes as the crisis at the border steadily grows with the influx of illegal immigration.
Price: The $2 trillion cost would be spread out over 8 years. Biden said, “I’m prepared to negotiate as to the extent of my infrastructure project as well as how we pay for it. I think everyone acknowledges we need a significant increase in infrastructure. It’s going to get down to what we call infrastructure.” Republicans have countered with a smaller $600 billion proposal.
While they hold the minority across the board, Republicans are still looking to limit the passage of this bill. Some Republicans have criticized the bill for including many other provisions separate from infrastructure. Even progressive Democrats have been critical, arguing that the bill doesn’t go far enough. Could we see Democrats use their simple majorities to push this through? Will this pave the way for other agenda items like packing the courts or abolishing the filibuster? Is this a necessary expense, or is this big government becoming even more bloated?
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