Biden to announce 2022 budget with biggest federal spending since Second World War

White House to release $6 trillion proposed budget to address ‘legacy of chronic underinvestment’ in US

Alex Woodward
New York
Thursday 27 May 2021 13:28
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Key moments from Biden's joint session of Congress
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The White House will unveil its proposed $6 trillion 2022 budget to Congress with the biggest federal spending push since the Second World War, with spending driven largely by Joe Biden’s sweeping domestic agenda with investments in social services and efforts to combat the climate crisis, reduce poverty and expand housing.

Mr Biden’s proposal will call for $6 trillion in spending for the 2022 fiscal year, with total spending to reach to $8.2 trillion by 2031, according to The New York Times.

The White House will announce its full budget proposal on 28 May, following last month’s preview that said the president’s proposal will address “a legacy of chronic underinvestment” within the US, press secretary Jen Psaki said at the time.

Mr Biden has proposed paying for his agenda by raising taxes on corporations and the nation’s wealthiest households, which officials have argued would begin to shrink the federal deficit over the next 15 years, as the administration aims to reverse cuts and spending priorities under former President Donald Trump.

According to budget documents obtained by The New York Times before the White House releases its full proposal, the federal government would spend more as a share of the economy than all but two years since the Second World War – 2020 and 2021, which saw heightened levels of federal spending to combat the economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic.

But by 2028, at the end of Mr Biden’s potential second term, the government would be collecting more tax revenue as a share of the economy in decades, driven by tax policies that would limit the burdens on middle-class families and collect what Mr Biden and Democrats have called the “fair share” from corporations and high earners that Mr Trump and Republicans have protected with significant cuts, part of a legacy of “trickle-down” economic policies that Mr Biden has argued never worked.

The president is travelling to Cleveland, Ohio on Thursday to promote his agenda and deliver remarks on the economy, as negotiations continue among members of Congress and the White House over a sweeping infrastructure proposal continue in Washington.

Mr Biden’s budget is predicting relatively moderate economic growth, at 2 per cent per year over the next decade, with unemployment falling to 4.1 per cent in 2022 and continuing to fall below 4 per cent in the years that follow, according to the newspaper.

His proposed budget is not expected to introduce new policies not already outlined in agenda items like the Americans Families Plan and infrastructure-focused American Jobs Plan, and would exclude campaign items like student debt elimination, expanded health coverage and a plan to cut prescription drug costs, according to The Washington Post.

Mr Biden’s proposal is still just that – the White House will make its request to Congress, which holds a slim Democratic majority, with control of the House of Representatives and an evenly divided Senate.

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