House is about to pass the climate, tax and health package

With Republicans unanimously opposed to the package, Democrats have used the fast-track budget reconciliation process to push legislation through both chambers, as they did last year with the pandemic relief package of 1, 9 trillion dollars. Completely excluded from the process, Republicans fumed that the bill did little to fight inflation and criticized plans to increase taxes and federal spending. (Many economists agree that it is likely to dampen inflation, albeit modestly and not immediately.)

“Having been left with a ‘take it or leave it’ offer from Senate Democrats, with no opportunity to provide comment or amend the bill, I am appalled that the majority is once again choosing to simply take it,” said Rep. Tom Cole. of Oklahoma, the top Republican on the House Rules Committee, said during a hearing Wednesday. He added, “It’s no surprise that no Republicans voted for this bill, just as no Republicans voted for the last reconciliation bill.”

Republicans shaped their anger in part on a proposal to invest $80 billion in the Internal Revenue Service. Democrats say it will bolster the historically underfunded agency and help crack down on wealthy tax cheats and corporations, but Republicans have called it a brutal attack on lower- and middle-class taxpayers. In response to criticism, Janet L. Yellen, the Secretary of the Treasury, asked the agency this week to ensure there is no increase in audits for small businesses or families making less than $400,000.

Others scoffed that the entire House would not be present to vote on the bill. From Friday morning, more than a third of House lawmakers had filed the necessary documents to vote by proxy – a practice instituted to prevent the spread of the coronavirus which quotes “the ongoing public health emergencyas a reason for not being able to vote in person.

“This ‘proxy vote’ – under a lie of most involved (meaning it’s COVID-related) will be used (illegally) to pass tax increases, harmful energy regulations, fund IRS agents to harass citizens and a massive increase in ‘big health care’ cronyism,” said Rep. Chip Roy, Republican of Texas. on Twitter.

The package will help the Biden administration meet its pledge to roughly halve emissions by 2030, though scientists and climate activists warn that more congressional and executive branch action will be needed to achieve that. objective. It aims to use the tax code to incentivize consumers and businesses to buy and invest in electric vehicles, solar panels and other renewable energy sources like wind or solar power, along with the necessary facilities. to build more of these items nationally.

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