Will Biden Fight For an Infrastructure Plan?
I won’t get my hopes up, but early emerging details from the plan are better than I would have expected.
As I and many others have noted in the past, before he was even sworn into office Joe Biden was expressing his desire to have a longstanding legacy as President, akin to someone like Roosevelt who shaped the nation for decades to come. While we’ve long been arguing that such a legacy would require bold, necessary action that was sufficient to meet this critical moment in American history, there have been a number of reasons to be skeptical about Biden’s willingness to go in that direction. After all, Biden’s administration made the infuriating decision that they were going to abandon the effort to get the $15 minimum wage into the $1.9 trillion Covid relief bill, and he has expressed clear resistance to cancelling student debt. That said, recent reports indicate that the long awaited infrastructure bill — which Biden intends to make the cornerstone of his Presidency — is one area where he might be taking a more hardline, aggressive approach in a positive direction.
In a recent piece in The Washington Post, Jeff Stein and Tyler Pager detailed how the President is planning a massive bill that will be broken down in two parts: infrastructure, and then on other priorities like extending the child tax credit that was in the covid relief bill. The $3 trillion plan is said to include free community college and universal prekindergarten, and of course hundreds of billions of dollars to repair waterways, roads, bridges, and rails. Also included is $100 billion for education infrastructure. $400 billion would go to combatting climate change, and $46 billion for climate research and development. Half of the $200 billion for housing infrastructure would be dedicated to housing for low income Americans.
Of course, details of this plan seem essentially meaningless when one considers that the Democratic party in the Senate would have to abolish or significantly reform the filibuster in order to get it through. Either that, or reconciliation, which Stein and Pager noted that there might be some reluctance to do.
That said, the details of the $3 trillion infrastructure plan come around the same time it was reported…