Joe Biden’s first joint address to Congress, which is not a State of the Union Address, will take place tonight.
Due to pandemic related restrictions, only about 200 people will be in attendance. While that’s not many in the context of a typical SOTU address, it’s about one hundred times the crowd size his rallies tended to attract.
In the context of concerns over Biden’s mental stamina, the lack of attendance will also provide the added benefit to Biden of giving a shorter speech, as applause takes up a large share of the time at every SOTU (or in this case, “joint address to Congress”).
While Biden has already passed a nearly $2 trillion stimulus after taking office, he’s already pushing for more new spending that will total more than double that. And keep in mind, that’s all spending in addition to the $4+ trillion federal budget, which is going to run a projected 15% of GDP this year, bringing the national debt to 109% of GDP.
As Just the News reported:
After Biden’s call for “unity” in his inaugural address, Democrats appear ready to use budget reconciliation again to move elements of the president’s latest plans through Congress without GOP votes.
Biden’s forthcoming $1.8 trillion American Families Plan is the follow-up to his $2.25 trillion American Jobs Plan, which is focused on infrastructure improvements, universal broadband and creating new union jobs.
The Democrats used the reconciliation tool to avoid the legislative filibuster in the Senate and pass Biden’s $1.9 trillion coronavirus stimulus bill called the American Rescue Plan Act.
The Congressional Budget Office estimated that Biden’s American Rescue Plan would add $1.9 trillion to deficits over a 10-year period. The American Jobs Plan and American Families Plan have not been drafted into formal legislation yet but are estimated to cost about $4 trillion combined.
To fund these programs, Biden has proposed hiking the corporate tax rate from 21% to 28% and raising the capital gains tax. He also is seeking $80 billion in additional funding for the IRS to beef up audits of high earners, under the presumption that doing so will net far more than $80 billion for the treasury.
Ironically, these new proposed taxes on “the rich” come at a time when Democrats also want to lower taxes on the rich. The state and local tax (SALT) cap at $10,000, what was implemented as part of Trump’s tax package. The $10k SALT cap prevents people from writing off state and local taxes above $10k against their federal taxes, and disproportionately costs coastal higher earners more money (who face high state taxes and property taxes).
It’s Democrats calling to lift the SALT cap, knowing that it’s coastal Democrats who would disproportionately benefit. Lifting the SALT cap would “cost” the government an additional $673 billion over the next year, which would make a huge dent in any revenue raised from corporate and capital gains tax hikes.
Author: Matt Palumbo