The U.S. Congress and White House leadership remind me of a sitcom or dysfunctional family you might know who has pathological liars in their midsts but the family runs interference for them so they don’t have to ever face the consequences.
The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania will reportedly issue a study Wednesday that reveals President Joe Biden’s reconciliation package will not be free, although the White House has claimed it would cost “zero” dollars.
The study reportedly estimates the net cost of the legislation will plague taxpayers with an extra $2.42 trillion in debt.
Punchbowl News reported Wharton analysis says the BBB is not completely paid for– it would increase spending by $1.87 trillion while increasing revenue by $1.56 trillion in the 10-year budget window. And if all of the programs besides the clean energy credit become permanent, that would increase new spending by $3.98 trillion while revenue would only increase by $1.56 trillion.
The estimate of Biden’s package is likely to turn the heads of lawmakers, some of whom are pushing for the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) to score the legislation before a vote is held on the measure this week.
“Moderate” Democrats are particularly interested in the scoring of the legislation. Members of Blue Dog Coalition have requested a hold on the passage of the legislation “until we have had a chance to review these scores which provide the true cost of the legislation.”
Rep. Stephanie Murphy (D-FL), who is facing a tough reelection race in 2022, has many concerns she relayed Wednesday. “I believe that we need to take a vote on the infrastructure bill as soon as possible. And I think when it comes to the BBB, we need to have some time to be able to review it — the CBO and JCT tables — to understand how much spending and how much revenue is in the package,” she wrote.
“And there needs to be some level of understanding as to whether or not this bill as written can survive the Senate procedural process,” she added.
Despite the Wharton study, the White House has claimed multiple times the legislation will cost nothing.
On September 28, the Washington Post reported Biden claimed his package would cost zero dollars. “We talk about price tags. It is zero price tag on the debt. We’re paying — we’re going to pay for everything we spend,” Biden said:
My Build Back Better Agenda costs zero dollars.
Instead of wasting money on tax breaks, loopholes, and tax evasion for big corporations and the wealthy, we can make a once-in-a-generation investment in working America.
And it adds zero dollars to the national debt.
— President Biden (@POTUS) September 26, 2021
“We talk about price tags. It is zero price tag on the debt. We’re paying — we’re going to pay for everything we spend.”
Totally delusional comments from @JoeBiden on the cost of his $5+ trillion spending bill.
He's deliberately lying to Americans.https://t.co/OXsTKLfQbD
— Republican State Leadership Committee (@RSLC) September 28, 2021
In October, a reporter finally questioned the White House about Biden’s claim.”Does the president still believe that Build Back Better will not add a dime to the national debt?” the reporter asked Psaki in a briefing.
“Correct. It won’t,” Psaki claimed.
“Why should Americans believe that?” the reporter asked.
“Because it won’t,” Psaki said flatly.