Is this far too much spending?
On Monday (March 28), as part of a $5.8 trillion plan to fund the government for the 2023 fiscal year, President Joe Biden unveiled plans to tax the wealthy in an attempt to reduce the nation’s deficit over the next ten years.
According to the White House, the tax hike on billionaires will decrease the fiscal deficit by $1 trillion over the next decade.
In a statement about his 2023 budget, Biden commented, “Budgets are statements of values, and the budget I am releasing today sends a clear message that we value fiscal responsibility, safety and security at home and around the world.”
Biden added the budget would also reveal “the investments needed to continue our equitable growth and build a better America.”
The budget conspicuously lacked funding proposals for Biden’s signature Build Back Better plan; instead, the budget includes a deficit-neutral reserve fund which is expected to serve as a placeholder for any possible agreements between Biden’s administration and Congress.
Shalanda Young, director of the Office of Management and Budget, told reporters, “Because those discussions with Congress are ongoing, the budget does not include specific line items for investments associated with that future legislation.”
Additionally, Biden’s budget lacks provisions for future Build Back Better legislation.
Young indicated that the reserve funds could be used for this purpose, laying out Biden’s three principles for an agreement, namely that it slashes costs for families, reduces the deficit, and expands the productive capacity of the economy.
Whether or not Build Back Better will move forward is still undetermined, as Biden’s proposal hit a roadblock in December when Senator Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) said he could not support the House-passed bill. Since then, Manchin has entered negotiations with Congress, though the progress of negotiations remains unknown.
When Young was asked about the progress of the talks, she declined to give information on the status of negotiations. Instead, she noted, “The deficit-neutral reserve fund is meant to leave the space, the revenue specifically, to allow congressional negotiators the room to do what President Biden has asked.”