U.S. media noted Monday (March 22) that the Biden administration will release the largest progressive spending package in U.S. history, with the proposed new spending bill including a push for early childhood Education programs, free college, climate-related spending and infrastructure programs.
Left-wing media outlets The New York Times and The Washington Post first reported the news on Monday. The new package, estimated to cost $3 trillion, includes universal pre-K, free community college and efforts purportedly aimed at reducing income inequality, the reports said.
The Washington Post reported that the bill is expected to be divided into two parts, one focusing on infrastructure and the other on other domestic priorities, such as universal early childhood education, national child care and free community college.”
The newspaper noted that “the infrastructure portion of the proposal includes $400 billion in spending to address climate change, with $60 billion for infrastructure related to green transportation and $46 billion for research and development related to climate change.”
“The plan would also aim to provide electric vehicle charging stations nationwide and would also include $200 billion for housing infrastructure, including $100 billion to expand the supply of housing for low-income Americans.”
The New York Times reports, “Administration officials warned that the details of the spending plan were still in flux.” “But the scope of the proposals under consideration underscores the aggressive approach the Biden Administration is taking as it tries to harness the power of the federal government to reduce economic inequality, reduce the carbon emissions that drive climate change, and improve U.S. manufacturing and high greenhouse gas emissions. The United States is competing fiercely with Beijing and other foreign competitors from the technology sector.”
First Lady Jill Biden had proposed in early February that U.S. taxpayers fund “free” community colleges. She tweeted, “Everyone should have access to free community college.”
According to USA Today, in-state and out-of-state tuition for community colleges is thousands of dollars per student. During the 2019-2020 academic year, the average annual tuition and fees at community colleges nationwide will be $3,730, while in-state tuition and fees at four-year public universities will average $10,440, according to the American Association of Community Colleges.
According to Columbia University, “In fall 2018, 5.6 million students enrolled in two-year public colleges. That’s about 2 million full-Time students and 3.6 million part-time students.”
Conservative media outlet Becker News decried that the plan would cost tens of billions of dollars a year and did not consider how the plan would stimulate demand for education and affect competition between private schools and public four-year colleges. The potential market distortions created by the new plan would be enormous.
Although the new spending plan is estimated at $3 trillion, the actual amount of the Biden spending bill could be higher than that, the report said. According to news reported last week and even earlier by the Associated Press, Politico and other media outlets, unions have encouraged the Biden administration to look at a $4 trillion spending plan, and in addition, the Biden administration is considering implementing a significant tax increase.
Bloomberg notes, “Changes in the tax hike plan include raising the corporate tax rate to 28 percent from 21 percent, raising the income tax rate for individuals earning more than $400,000 a year, expanding the estate tax, creating a higher capital gains tax rate for individuals earning at least $1 million a year, and cutting tax breaks for some businesses.”
The report continues, “For the Biden administration, the planned reforms are an opportunity not only to fund key initiatives such as infrastructure, climate and help for poor Americans, but also to address what Democrats see as inequities in the tax system itself.”
If the new Biden spending plan reaches $3 trillion or even $4 trillion, the U.S. would face nearly $10 trillion in new spending bills in just one year. The New York Post noted that “U.S. COVID bailout spending quickly reached $5.5 trillion in less than 12 months” and “By comparison, World War II cost the U.S. government about $4.8 trillion on a 2021 dollar measure. ”