Joe Biden, Congress set to fight over taxes: The president is set to introduce a new tax plan next week, which may not be met with resistance from centrist Democrats in the Senate.
Nevertheless, with Republicans in charge of one house of Congress, it’s unlikely that such tax hikes will pass, at least in the way Joe Biden is proposing.
Biden is set to unveil his budget proposal next Thursday.
“On March the 9th, I’m going to lay down in detail every single thing, every tax that’s out there that I’m proposing, and no one … making less than $400,000 is going to pay a penny more in taxes,” the president said at an event in Virginia this week. “I want to make it clear. I’m gonna raise some taxes.”
Joe Biden: Starting a Tax War?
“If it’s about tax equity we’ll take a look at it. If it’s about across-the-board tax increases for everybody it’s probably the wrong time to do it because of inflation,” Sen. Jon Tester (D-MT), a Democratic senator in a red state who has announced that he is running for re-election in 2024, told The Hill.
Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) also sounded less than excited about the idea of a tax increase on the wealthy, in speaking with The Hill.
Manchin, who is often described as the most conservative Democrat in the Senate, is up for re-election in 2024 but has not announced whether he’s running again. Manchin had stood in the way of Biden’s tax plans during the previous Congress when the Democrats had majorities in both houses.
Biden will announce his budget proposal next week, but what he announces is not going to become law, as acknowledged in the Hill story by some Democrats.
“As far as the effort we made last Congress to undo some of the rates from the 2017 [tax law] we were unsuccessful and we had control of the House. I don’t see us getting very far this year,” Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD) told the Hill.
As is often the case in budget talks between a Democratic president and Republican-controlled Congress, the Republicans are pushing for spending cuts and deficit reduction, although they have not announced specific proposals of exactly what they want. In similar fights during the Obama Administration, the president pushed a combination of spending cuts and tax increases, while the Republicans objected to the tax-raising part.
However, Democrats now are claiming that because they have already moved to cut the deficit, further cuts are less necessary.
“We Democrats have already walked that walk. In the [Inflation Reduction Act] was the first major bill that reduced the deficit by $300 billion. In the last year with the Biden administration we reduced the deficit by more than in the Trump years,” Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) told the press this week, according to the Hill piece.
The Democratic claim about deficit reduction in 2022 is a bit misleading since much of that was the result of the expiration of pandemic-era aid.
However, the falling deficit does at the same time undercut Republican complaints about “runaway” spending and deficits.
And during the Trump presidency, as is often the case in Republican administrations, the deficit and debt were not much of a concern.
A more likely endgame, rather than Biden’s budget passing as is, is that the president and Republicans in Congress eventually agree on some type of continuing resolution that raises the debt ceiling and includes spending levels agreed upon by the two sides.
Expertise and Experience: Stephen Silver is a Senior Editor for 19FortyFive. He is an award-winning journalist, essayist and film critic, who is also a contributor to the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, Broad Street Review and Splice Today. The co-founder of the Philadelphia Film Critics Circle, Stephen lives in suburban Philadelphia with his wife and two sons. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenSilver.