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HomeNewsManchin Signals He Is Open For Wealth Tax In Biden's Plan

Manchin Signals He Is Open For Wealth Tax In Biden’s Plan

Sen. Joe Manchin, a key Democratic vote, looks to support White House suggestions for increased taxes on billionaires and select companies to help pay for President Joe Biden’s scaled-back social services and climate change package.

On Sunday, Biden met with West Virginia Democrat Joe Manchin and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer at the president’s Delaware residence to hash out the differences between centrists and progressives that have stymied the Democrats’ sweeping measure. The Associated Press reported that Manchin agrees with the White House’s new strategy on the tax plans, according to a source who requested anonymity to discuss Manchin’s views.

What was once a massive $3.5 trillion plan has been reduced to a $1.75 trillion bundle. According to a second individual who requested anonymity to discuss the confidential conversations, this is within a range that might yet grow far higher.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Biden’s main domestic project would be greater than any prior legislative package, even if it was just “half” the initial $3.5 trillion promised, with huge expenditures in health care, child care, and climate change initiatives.

“It’s less than what was originally expected, but it’s still greater than anything we’ve ever done in terms of addressing the needs of America’s working people,” Pelosi said on CNN’s “State of the Union” on Sunday.

Democrats are trying hard to resurrect discussions on the bill so that President Obama may highlight his administration’s accomplishments to foreign leaders at two upcoming international meetings on the economy and climate change.

After Democrats missed last week’s deadline to address differences, Biden met with Manchin and Schumer, D-N.Y., at the president’s house in Wilmington. Biden has stated that he would want to see a $2 trillion deal, and they will try to achieve an agreement again this week.

According to the individual who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss Manchin’s views, it’s unclear what level of new taxes Manchin would approve, but he generally supports the White House recommendations. No one who insisted on confidentiality was allowed to speak about the negotiations by name.

The breakfast meeting, according to the White House, had a “constructive conversation” about the president’s priorities. The discussions appeared to go on for hours, but no decisions were made. The White House claimed in a post-meeting statement that the Democrats “continued to make progress.”

The Democrats say that the extra spending would be completely funded by various taxes, so resolving the revenue issue is critical.

Manchin and another Democrat, Arizona Senator Kyrsten Sinema, have effectively stopped Biden’s idea from moving forward. Biden has no votes to spare because of Republican opposition and a 50-50 Senate divide, and the two Democratic senators have insisted on decreasing the size of the massive package and pressing for additional modifications.

After Sinema rejected an earlier plan to reverse the Republican-led 2017 tax cuts and boost rates on businesses making more than $5 million a year and rich Americans earning more than $400,000, or $450,000 for couples, one of the most contentious issues has been how to pay for the package.

Instead, the White House is exploring a tax on billionaires’ investment revenues, which would affect fewer than 1,000 of the country’s wealthiest people with $1 billion in assets. It has also proposed a 15% corporate minimum tax, which would ensure that all companies pay their “fair share,” as Biden puts it, stopping the practice of certain big-name corporations paying no taxes.

Biden’s package was supposed to feature $3.5 trillion in spending and tax cuts over ten years, according to Democrats. However, moderates led by Manchin and Sinema have demanded cost containment, which means the ultimate price tag might be less than $2 trillion.

Planned investments include expanding Medicare coverage to include dental, vision, and hearing aid benefits for seniors, as well as child care support and free pre-kindergarten.

Pelosi, a Democrat from California, said on CNN that Democrats were still striving to maintain provisions for four weeks of paid family leave, but recognized that some plans, like as expanding Medicare to include dental treatment, could be more difficult to save due to cost.

Pelosi reaffirmed that nearly 90% of the work has been completed and that she expects an agreement by the end of the week, setting the way for a House vote on a separate $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure measure before a series of transportation programs expire next Sunday, Oct. 31. The bundle of road, broadband, and other public works projects was passed by the Senate over the summer, but it stuck in the House during debate on the bigger Biden plan.

Manchin, whose state has a large coal sector, has been a vocal opponent of Biden’s early climate change measures, which included a plan to punish utilities that do not transition to sustainable energy rapidly enough. Other climate change policies are presently being compiled by Democrats in order to reach Biden’s target of lowering US greenhouse gas emissions by at least 50% by 2030.

Democrats hoped Biden would be able to point to substantial successes when he speaks at a global climate change conference in Scotland in early November, following a summit of world leaders in Rome.

Sen. Angus King, a Maine independent who joins the Democratic caucus, said the funding bill’s predicted cuts to renewable energy initiatives were particularly distressing.

On NBC’s “Meet the Press,” King stated, “If we’re going to encourage the rest of the world to take meaningful actions to rectify this problem, we’ve got to do it ourselves.”

Democrats, Pelosi said, had cobbled together additional ideas in the funding plan that would lower emissions. “We’ll have something that meets the president’s objectives,” she said.

Democrats also seek to make gains that would help Democrat Terry McAuliffe win a tight governor’s race in Virginia on Nov. 2.

Rep. Ro Khanna, a member of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, has stated that if there is no agreement on the bigger package, which would be enacted under so-called budget reconciliation procedures, his caucus will not back the infrastructure measure before Oct. 31.

On “Fox News Sunday,” Khanna, D-Calif., stated, “The president needs the reconciliation deal to go to Glasgow.” “That’s what’s going to deal with climate change, and that’s what’s going to meet his targets of a 50% reduction by 2030,” he continued. I’m sure that we’ll be able to reach an agreement.”

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