With each passing day, more details emerge about how truly radical Biden’s $5 trillion dollar spending plan is. However, while the legislation is chock full of far-left policies and should be a golden opportunity for Republicans to underscore the dangerous new direction of the Democratic Party, Congressional Republicans by and large have been lethargic in mobilizing against the Biden plan.
Initially, it looked as if Senate Republicans would use the looming debt ceiling to extract some concessions or perhaps even sink the bill altogether. But then came the news late last week that Senate Republican leadership had instead reached a deal with Democrats to extend the debt limit until December 3, in effect handing over the only real bargaining chip the Republicans had at their disposal.
So as the Congressional GOP continues to dither in forming an effective response, former President Donald Trump filled the void and delivered a brutal takedown of the bill during his rally Saturday night at the Iowa state fairgrounds just outside Des Moines. In a few short minutes, Trump provided the most comprehensive critique to date of just how sinister the Democrat bill is.
Speaking before a raucous crowd, Trump got right to the point: “It’s a socialist transformation bill, it’s an Open Borders bill, it’s an American Energy destruction bill, it’s an illegal race-based discrimination bill, it’s a corrupt elections bill, it’s a bankrupt Medicare bill, it’s a bankrupt Social Security bill, and it is a naked power grab by the likes of Joe Biden, Nancy Pelosi, Kamala Harris, Bernie Sanders, AOC, and Ilhan Omar,” he said.
The former president then went into detail about some of the more radical provisions in the bill, many of which have been sparsely reported on in the media. His criticisms were both specific and incisive, exposing how the bill amounts to little more than a power grab for Democrats. “This bill is a sinister combination of job-killing tax hikes and woke fascism that will destroy our nation,” Trump said.
As Trump explained, the bill would tax businesses at 26.5% –higher than in communist China – and raise the capital gains and qualified dividends tax from 23.8 percent to 31.8 percent. Since China has no capital gains tax, this would effectively make the integrated tax rate on businesses twice as high in the U.S. as in China.
Trump’s reproach of the tax provisions in the bill also come on the heels of an analysis from the nonpartisan Joint Committee on Taxation which found that the bill would raise taxes on families at all income levels, running counter to a key Biden campaign promise to not raise taxes on anyone earning less than $400,000.
Moreover, as Trump explained, the bill would not only take more money out of Americans’ pockets through taxes, but would also lead to higher gas prices and job-killing energy regulations. The bill would “demolish the U.S. energy industry,” Trump said, “starting with a $630 billion dollar down-payment on the socialist Green New Deal.” As if that weren’t bad enough, as Trump also explained, the economic policies in the bill would likely lead to a worsening of the ongoing inflation crisis and could thrust the U.S. into the dreaded realm of stagflation.
Trump also spoke at length about the immigration policies in the bill and the provisions in the legislation that would abolish the Hyde Amendment and fund abortions, subsidize the liberal media, impose Critical Race Theory on government employees, and empower the IRS to harass Democrats’ political enemies, among other items on the progressive wish list.
Beyond the specific legislative proposals in the bill, Trump called out the special carve-outs for liberal lawmakers and supporters scattered throughout the legislation. Some of the most egregious examples include $200 million for a golf course in Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s district, special tax breaks for unionized workers and companies not available to nonunion workers, and a $50,000-per-year tax credit for liberal journalists, just to name a few.
In closing, Trump warned that “the Radical Democrats will lower the final price tag to try to fool the public, but the bottom line will always be a socialist transformation of America.”
If Republicans are going to effectively oppose Biden’s spending plan, turn public opinion against the bill, and ramp up pressure on Democrats to vote against it, they are going to have to convey to the public what is actually in the legislation, and explain why it would be bad for the country. While their efforts thus far leave much to be desired, President Trump perhaps showed the way forward, laying out a road map for opposing the bill that just may help sink it – and possibly provide a clear path to victory in next year’s midterm elections.
So far, however, Republican groups and politicians have been woefully inadequate at conveying that message to the American people. According to recent reporting from Axios, liberal groups have outspent conservative ones by more than 50% – $36.8 million to $19.1 million – in ads supporting Biden’s spending plan. That spending is providing a measure of political cover for vulnerable Democrats ahead of next year’s midterm elections.
President Biden has also hit the road – a rare sight for the hermitlike President – to sell his plan to potential skeptics. Last Tuesday, for example, he visited Democratic Rep. Elissa Slotkin’s red-leaning district in Michigan, calling his spending bill an issue of “competitiveness versus complacency.”
That slogan characterizes the fight over Biden’s spending plan remarkably well for Republicans too. So far, most have chosen complacency. But with President Trump to lead the way, a man always defined by his willingness to take on any fight and never give in, there may be hope yet for Republicans to kill Biden’s agenda before it can even get off the ground.