Congressional Democrats are about to pass a truly historic $6 trillion budget that will focus on priorities identified by President Joe Biden as fundamental to making sure the United States addresses the problems facing the nation: Crumbling infrastructure, climate change, and the lack of affordable health care for every American.
According to the Washington Post, most of the discussion is taking place in the Senate, which remains evenly split between Democrats and Republicans, 50-50, with Vice President Kamala Harris casting the tiebreaking vote when needed.
One of the biggest changes would be to Medicare:
“(Democrats) are also considering reconciliation as an avenue to pursue changes to Medicare that would lower the eligibility age to 60 from 65, as well as major reforms that expand its coverage to include vision and dental and seek to lower the cost of prescription drugs, according to the three people familiar with the effort.”
Yes, the plan is to use budget reconciliation for the massive budget package, meaning that Senate Republicans cannot filibuster or block the bill reaching the Senate floor and becoming law.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) says he’s convinced there’s unity among Democrats that will be needed to pass the reconciliation package this summer:
The Biden budget would be paid for with higher taxes on the wealthiest and corporations:
“The reconciliation package is also expected to open the door for changes to the tax code that raise rates on corporations and high-income earners, the sources said. Biden has sought to unwind the 2017 tax cuts approved under then-President Donald Trump to fund his economic agenda, a position that Republicans vehemently oppose.”
Republicans oppose rescinding the tax cut because it benefits their wealthy contributors who help bankroll their campaigns.
It should also be noted that plans to spend on infrastructure, climate change, and health care are wildly popular with voters, so passing such a budget deal could well benefit Democrats in next year’s midterm elections.
Once again, we see that President Biden, Sen. Schumer, and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi have outmaneuvered Republicans, who stand for nothing but obstruction, whining, and lies.