Last week, President Biden unveiled his first federal budget — a proposal with a $6 trillion price tag.
The budget’s summary declares that “America cannot afford to simply return to the way things were before the pandemic and economic downturn, with the old economy’s structural weaknesses and inequities still in place.” Instead, the Biden administration declares that America “must seize this moment to reimagine and rebuild a new American economy that invests in the promise and potential of every single American.”
The $6 trillion federal budget for fiscal year 2022 is the largest in American history. It surpasses President Trump’s 2021 proposal of $4.8 trillion, which was likewise the largest on record.
The Biden administration’s budget expands his American Jobs Plan and American Families Plan — omnibus packages that already cost $2.7 trillion and $1.8 trillion, respectively.
Below are five things you need to know about President Biden’s new budget.
After listing the key points of the American Jobs Plan and the American Families Plan, the budget suggests large increases in federal spending on education.
First, the budget proposes “historic investments in high-poverty schools” — specifically, with $36.5 billion in new Title I grant funding that represents an 83% increase over the 2021 budget. The budget also offers $1 billion “to increase the number of counselors, nurses, and mental health professionals in schools” and $443 million for afterschool programs, adult education, and health services.
President Biden’s budget touts its expansion of federal expenditures on “early child care and learning.” The administration requests $7.4 billion for the Child Care and Development Block Grant — a $1.5 billion increase from last year’s proposal — and $11.9 billion for Head Start, a federal kindergarten program.
The budget lists several items that emphasize “equity” in federal spending.
In particular, the administration allocated $70 million toward expanding opportunities for “minority-owned businesses” — specifically, to “fund investments in economic development grants and research to ensure policies effectively support the minority business community.” In accordance with this goal, the budget gives $330 million — a 22% increase from last year — to “offer loans to start-ups and small businesses to promote the production of affordable housing and community revitalization projects.”
Beyond these investments, the Biden administration offers funding to several racial equity programs costing less than one billion dollars apiece — including the refurbishment of “recreational centers and commercial corridor improvements in historically underfunded and marginalized communities facing persistent poverty” and the creation of “cleaner, robust, and affordable transportation options, including high-quality transit, equitable transit-oriented development, and other enhancements.”
Much of President Biden’s healthcare budget revolves around public health.
Notably, the budget offers $8.7 billion in funding to the CDC — “the largest budget authority increase in nearly two decades” — to “modernize public health data collection nationwide, train new epidemiologists and other public health experts, and rebuild international capacity to detect, prepare for, and respond to emerging global threats.”
In addition to spending $6.5 billion to launch the “Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health,” $10.7 billion to fight the opioid epidemic through the Department of Health and Human Services, and $2.1 billion to combat the “gun violence public health epidemic,” the healthcare budget likewise places a heavy emphasis on “equity.” Among other expenditures, the budget offers $2.2 billion to “dramatically increase” funding for the Indian Health Service and $153 million for the CDC’s “Social Determinants of Health” program.
In a massive shift from former administrations, the new budget would end the Hyde Amendment — a statute that has been attached to federal budget proposals since 1976 to stop taxpayer dollars from bankrolling elective abortion.
Marking a $36 billion expansion upon the American Jobs Plan’s proposed spending on environmental policy, President Biden’s budget makes climate change a central theme.
To retrofit buildings and complete other projects related to climate change, the budget repeatedly lauds the importance of “good-paying union jobs.” For instance, the budget spends $2 billion on “welders, electricians, and other skilled laborers to work building clean energy projects” and $580 million to create 250,000 jobs devoted to “remediating abandoned wells and mines.”
The budget emphasizes the need for “disaster planning” with respect to climate change. In particular, the budget sets apart $815 million — a 96% increase since the 2021 enacted level — to “incorporate climate impacts into pre-disaster planning and projects.” It also provides $1.2 billion above the 2021 level to “increase the resilience of ecosystems and communities across the nation to wildfires, flooding, and drought” — a proposal that would involve granting another $100 million to the CDC.
The budget also makes the “largest investment in environmental justice in history” through a $936 million “Accelerating Environmental and Economic Justice” initiative at the Environmental Protection Agency, as well as $450 million to “help tribal nations address the climate crisis.”
Beyond its $715 billion request for the Department of Defense, President Biden’s budget adds new foreign policy funding that would reverse the more isolationist bent of former President Trump.
The budget provides funding “to support U.S. commitments to the World Health Organization, the United Nations (UN) Population Fund, and the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, while continuing to press for needed reforms.” The budget also volunteers $2.5 billion for “international climate programs to help rally the world against this urgent threat, restore U.S. leadership, and catalyze new climate pledges.”
With respect to immigration — and as his administration faces a migrant crisis on the Southern border — President Biden’s budget offers “resources to implement a fair, orderly, and humane immigration system” that would support up to 125,000 refugee admissions into the United States. The President also requests $10 billion in “humanitarian assistance to support vulnerable people abroad, including refugees and conflict victims.”
The views expressed in this piece are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent those of The Daily Wire.
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