Pramila Jayapal: ‘Fight Inflation’ And ‘Lower Costs’ With Build Back Better
WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 16: U.S. Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-WA) speaks at the "Time to Deliver" Home Care Workers rally and march on November 16, 2021 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Jemal Countess/Getty Images for SEIU)
Jemal Countess/Getty Images for SEIU

Fundamentally, inflation consists of too many dollars chasing too few goods — but progressive Democrats are suggesting that more dollars will help ease cost pressures for American families.

On Wednesday, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that consumer prices are rising at a 7% clip as of December 2021 — the highest rate in roughly 40 years. Likewise, “real average hourly earnings” — which consider the effect of inflation — decreased by 2.4% from December 2020 to December 2021, starkly cutting the purchasing power of American consumers.

To solve the problem, Democratic lawmakers are renewing their push for President Joe Biden’s “Build Back Better” plan — a multitrillion-dollar social welfare bill.

“We fight inflation by lowering costs for working people,” Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-WA) tweeted. “And we lower costs by passing Build Back Better.”

“Families are struggling with soaring prices on everyday essentials like groceries, gas, housing, and health care,” Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) added. “Meanwhile, big corporations are making record profits. We need to pass #BuildBackBetter and boost competition to lower prices.”

“Republicans have no plan to address the global inflation problem,” Rep. Bobby Scott (D-VA) suggested. “Experts say the #BuildBackBetter Act will reduce inflationary pressures on the middle class by cutting taxes for working families & by reducing the costs of child care & prescription drugs.”

“The Build Back Better act addresses inflation by lowering child care, energy, housing and healthcare costs for everyday Americans,” Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) said. “Republicans talk about inflation. House Dems are doing something about it.”

Meanwhile, White House Deputy Communications Director Kate Berner shared a news clip of Jared Bernstein — a member of the Council of Economic Advisers — arguing that the Build Back Better plan will “ease inflationary pressures.” He also asserted that rather than discouraging work, the legislation’s new social programs would “boost labor supply.”

Indeed, President Biden himself suggested on Wednesday that the White House is “making progress” on inflation.

“Today’s report — which shows a meaningful reduction in headline inflation over last month, with gas prices and food prices falling — demonstrates that we are making progress in slowing the rate of price increases,” Biden said in a statement. “At the same time, this report underscores that we still have more work to do, with price increases still too high and squeezing family budgets.”

“Inflation is a global challenge, appearing in virtually every developed nation as it emerges from the pandemic economic slump,” Biden added. “America is fortunate that we have one of the fastest growing economies — thanks in part to the American Rescue Plan — which enables us to address price increases and maintain strong, sustainable economic growth. That is my goal and I am focused on reaching it every day.”

Biden issued a similar statement on Twitter: “Today’s inflation numbers show a meaningful reduction in headline inflation over last month. We are making progress in slowing the rate of price increases. But there is still more work to do — I remain focused on lowering costs for families and maintaining strong economic growth.”

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