Joe Biden’s $6.8 trillion annual budget proposal, which included a proposed increase of $5 trillion in taxes in order to fund it all, surprised many in Congress due to drastically overshooting what he was expected to ask for.
As reported by The Hill, the unexpected proposal only creates greater risks for Democrats in the 2024 elections, as Biden presumably prepares for a re-election bid and his party seeks to defend 23 seats in the U.S. Senate, including many red-state seats.
The new proposal, some say, would only exacerbate ongoing economic woes, including inflation and high tax rates, putting an even greater strain on the average American household’s finances. However, Biden has vowed that he would not raise taxes on anyone making more than $400,000 a year.
Senator Mike Crapo (R-Idaho) described the Biden administration’s proposal as “jaw-dropping,” declaring it to be “exactly the wrong approach to solving our fiscal problems.”
Most in Congress were expecting Biden to ask for no more than $2.5 trillion in tax increases; his new proposal is twice as high, and noticeably higher than any tax increase Biden called for while his party controlled both houses of Congress in his first two years.
However, some have opined that the massive proposal could simply be a negotiating tool rather than an actual demand.
“I didn’t expect to see a number that big, but I’m not alarmed by it,” said Jim Kessler, a spokesman for the center-left think tank Third Way. “I think it’s a negotiating position.”
Biden previously promised in his most recent State of the Union address that whatever budget proposal he would put forward would bring down the national deficit by at least $2 trillion, and would “pay for the ideas I’ve talked about tonight by making the wealthy and big corporations begin to pay their fair share.”
Among the taxes Biden has called for to fund his agenda are a 25 percent tax on the nation’s wealthiest 0.01 percent of families, an increase in the corporate tax rate from 21 percent to 28 percent, as well as raising the top marginal income tax rate from 37 percent to 39.6 percent. Biden has also called for quadrupling the 1 percent tax on stock buybacks, and taxing capital gains at 39.6 percent for those with incomes greater than $1 million.