House Speaker Nancy Pelosi defended President Joe Biden’s proposed tax increases amid GOP criticism Wednesday, slamming Republicans for their 2017 tax cuts.
“We’re on a better path for the people. What he is talking about is exactly just to reverse some of what the Republicans did in their tax scam where they added almost $2 trillion to the national debt, if you include the cost and the interest on the debt, to give tax breaks to the top, top, wealthiest people in the country,” Pelosi said Wednesday afternoon in an interview on MSNBC.
Biden has proposed paying for a broad $1.8 trillion plan to boost child care and families via tax increases on wealthy Americans, drawing attacks from Republicans. Biden has also proposed paying for his broadly defined infrastructure package by hiking the corporate tax rate. Biden has pledged to not increase taxes for individuals making less than $400,000 annually.
Republicans’ 2017 tax cuts that Pelosi referenced had a $1.5 trillion price tag over 10 years. Pelosi defended Biden’s proposed tax hikes, saying they don’t come from “any resentment against anybody for their success” and that Biden is “rewarding work" and meeting people’s needs.
In the interview Wednesday, Pelosi touted Biden’s plans, including the “American Families Plan,” which he will unveil Wednesday night in his first joint address to Congress. The families plan would give $200 billion for universal prekindergarten, $100 billion for free community college, extend an expanded child tax credit through 2025 and include $225 billion for the nation’s first paid medical and family leave program, among other things.
“It will be transformative, calling upon obviously the traditions of our party, persistent bold experimentation to work for the people,” Pelosi said.
Both of Biden’s proposed packages are unlikely to gain much, if any, Republican support in Congress. Senate Minority Whip John Thune (R-S.D.) has attacked Biden’s proposed tax hikes.
“President Biden’s proposed tax hikes may help Democrats realize their socialist vision for our country, but they won’t help working Americans when they crush our economic recovery & force employers to cut jobs and/or move to lower-tax areas,” Thune wrote in a tweet Tuesday.
Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) attacked the plan Biden will roll out Wednesday night, calling it “anti-family” in an interview Wednesday morning on Fox Business.
“The wallets of Americans from every walk of life are hurt by Biden’s tax plan,” Blackburn wrote in a tweet Wednesday, saying the plan will cause inflation.
So far, Republicans have generally avoided attacking the details of Biden’s popular plans. On the Senate floor Wednesday, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell hit Biden for failing to deliver on his promise to work for unity, in McConnell’s view.
“Many hoped his administration would reflect that promise. But the first 100 days have left much to be desired,” McConnell said. “Over a few short months, the Biden administration seems to have given up on selling actual unity in favor of catnip for their liberal base, covered with a hefty coat of false advertising.”