President Biden’s false claim that his “Build Back Better” spending blowout (more accurately named “Build Back Broke”) would cost “zero dollars” just got further exposed for the farce it is.
Thanks to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, we know more about how America’s growing debt bomb will advance further toward detonation if Congress doesn’t halt BBB socialism in its tracks.
The CBO is meant to be the neutral referee tallying price tags for Congress’ bills, and CBO boss Phillip Swagel said Monday that Democrats’ BBB proposal to beef up Internal Revenue Service enforcement against tax cheats would pay a mere fraction of what Biden’s team claimed it would.
Instead of the $400 billion over 10 years Biden claimed, the CBO said it would harvest a mere $120 billion. We’re still waiting for the full CBO price tag for the entire BBB package.
That’s not the only sleight of hand. Biden claims the cost is just $1.75 trillion, but he relies on gimmicks like phasing programs in gradually and shoving costs onto states after initial federal support. Counter to Team Biden’s deception, analysis by the Penn Wharton Budget Model, a nonpartisan group at University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton Business School, found Biden’s plan could actually cost more than $3.9 trillion over 10 years if spending and revenue provisions become permanent.
That is a very real scenario, as President Ronald Reagan knew: Government bureaucracy is “the nearest thing to eternal life.”
Last month, Americans suffered record-high inflation of 6.2 percent, the highest measured in three decades. Lower-income families spend more of their budgets than wealthier families on everyday needs like food, housing and health care. The Biden administration’s massive BBB government spending plan will only accelerate inflation in our country and hurt our most vulnerable populations.
An inflationary bubble is the worst time to pass trillions in more government spending like BBB because it will sink us deeper into debt and further inflate prices. This will strike poor, minority and elderly (especially fixed-income retirees) households hardest.
America’s debt problem is already a kicked can — there isn’t much road left.
As the useful Web site USDebtClock.org reports, we are fast approaching $29 trillion in national debt, about $87,000 per citizen. Our debt-to-GDP ratio is nearly 126 percent, far higher than the 52 percent in 1960 (just prior to LBJ’s massive “Great Society” welfare binge spending that decimated African-American families), 35 percent in 1980 and 56 percent in 2000.
If we layer on even more national debt — just like an individual buying too much on a credit card — we would get an American bond downgrade. Democrats’ new BBB debt explosion will make inflation even higher by pushing up borrowing costs, should America experience a bond-rating downgrade.
If we don’t stop BBB in its tracks, America won’t be prepared for the next real emergency (and no, Pete Buttigieg, “racist roads” aren’t one). We won’t have much extra room before we get downgraded and everything gets more expensive because our interest rate for US sovereign borrowing would spike. It’s the exact opposite of what we need during this inflation craze.
The good news is that leaders like Sens. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) are showing some common sense. They’re leading the charge — bucking their own party — to torpedo the bill. They need all the support they can get.
Carrie Sheffield is a senior policy analyst at Independent Women’s Voice.