President Joe Biden unveiled the second phase of his $1.8 trillion economic plan. The plan follows a $2.3 trillion infrastructure plan released in March. The White House has been working on bipartisan outreach since the first piece of legislation was passed.
Part of the outreach effort includes two key Biden teams – the Domestic Policy team and the National Economic Council – holding four bipartisan committee staff briefings attended by top agency officials. The White House also held two bipartisan staff-level briefings for staff directors and House Republican leadership. Biden has personally held meetings with bipartisan lawmakers in the Oval Office and spoken with Sen Shelley Moore Capito who has been part of a Republican effort to draft an infrastructure counter framework. Next week, more meetings with congressional leaders are on the docket.
The economic agenda released on Wednesday addresses provisions for a national paid family and medical leave program, child-care subsidies, and an extension of tax credit expansion. Education spending covers universal prekindergarten and two years of free community college among other benefits and investments. The plan also outlines an adjustment to the current unemployment insurance system. All of this is to be financed with 15 years of higher taxes on corporations.
Biden’s $2.25 trillion infrastructure and jobs proposal has been met with criticism from Republicans. Their key contentions are the scale of spending and the tax increases for corporations.
Biden’s legislative affairs team has had a total of 415 meetings with chiefs of staff, members, and staff directors. They’ve also held 24 bipartisan and Republican House and Senate committee staff briefings. However, Biden has made it clear that he will still act, with or without support. In his address, he said, “The rest of the world is not waiting for us. From my perspective, doing nothing is not an option.”