The Biden White House is planning to push forward with another massive coronavirus relief bill despite having just passed and signed a trillion-dollar relief package, Press Secretary Jen Psaki told Chris Wallace Sunday.
The bill’s $1400 individual stimulus relief is barely in Americans’ bank accounts, but the Biden administration says it wants further stimulus payments, as well as increased funding for healthcare and education — two industries that received major handouts in the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021.
“When the president advocated for the American Rescue Plan, he talked about this being two stages: rescue then recovery. What the American people will hear from him this week, is part of his plan, the first step of his plan toward recovery which will include an investment in infrastructure,” Psaki said.
Biden is, in fact, scheduled to debut a “multi-trillion-dollar” infrastructure investment bill later this week during a trip to Pennsylvania, but the president had yet to specify whether that initiative was also a COVID-19 relief project. According to Psaki, it may, in fact, be the first over several pandemic-oriented bills, all with price tags over $1.9 trillion — more than Biden’s first bill.
“The next major initiative is – and I’ll be announcing it Friday in Pittsburgh in detail – is to rebuild the infrastructure, both the physical and technological infrastructure of this country so that we can compete and create significant numbers of really good-paying jobs,” Biden said during his press conference last Thursday.
Fox News notes that the “specific contours of the next big-ticket spending package are still unclear, but the measure is widely expected to include a slew of taxes hikes, including raising the corporate tax rate to 28% from 21%, increasing the income tax rate on individuals earning more than $400,000, expanding the estate tax, creating a higher capital-gains tax rate for individuals earning at least $1 million annually and paring back tax preferences for so-called pass-through businesses.”
The bill, though, is already being packed full of non-infrastructure spending. Democrats plan to use the $3 trillion bill to sneak through changes to drug policy, environmental policy, and even immigration, according to Politico. “The Congressional Hispanic Caucus wants to include the White House’s immigration bill, which would offer a path to citizenship for 11 million people who have been living in the U.S.,” the outlet noted Friday, adding that other Democrats see the bill as a way to push through parts of the Green New Deal.
Psaki’s comments, though, went beyond even the infrastructure bill. According to the press secretary, the Biden White House will be working on a second bill to be presented in April.
“He’s going to have more to say later in April about the second part of his recovery plan, which will include a number of the pieces you talked about — health care, child care, addressing that. It’s a crisis right now, the number of women who have left the workplace,” Psaki told Wallace. “The total package, we’re still working out.”
The healthcare industry has received hefty payouts in all four official COVID-19 relief bills, as has the education industry. Spending for the latter became a point of contention following the American Rescue Act’s passage since a mere 5% of the money included in the bill for “reopening schools” was set to be allocated in time for the 2021-2022 school year to begin in September.
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