A massive expansion of the American welfare state cleared its first major hurdle in Congress on Wednesday as the Senate passed a $3.5 trillion budget resolution.
The bill’s goal is to enshrine progressive demands such as government-funded universal pre-K, free community college and tax increases on corporations while opening up the floodgates for illegal immigrants to obtain legal status and throwing money at addressing climate change.
“This legislation will not only provide enormous support to the kids of this country, to the parents of this country, to the elderly people of this country,” said Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, according to The New York Times. “But it will also, I hope, restore the belief that in America we can have a government that works for all, not just the few.”
Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina saw things differently.
“You’re spending money like drunken sailors,” he said.
“You’re putting in motion, I think, the demise of America as we know it. You’re putting in motion a government that nobody’s grandchild can ever afford to pay,” the senator added.
Democrats are engaged in a $9.5 TRILLION spending spree. This week, they’re spending nearly $5 TRILLION.
$1,200,000,000,000 “infrastructure” bill
$3,500,000,000,000 Bernie budget resolution
Our country is facing an inflation bomb, due in part to the Democrats’ money printing.
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) August 10, 2021
The resolution, which passed the Senate 50-49, lays out the broad parameters of the Democratic wish list. Still to come is the final language translating what Democrats want into detailed proposals.
That will likely pit Democrat against Democrat in an effort to appease both the party’s far-left and centrist elements. For example, Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia suggested he was not fully on board with the proposal’s bottom line.
“Given the current state of the economic recovery, it is simply irresponsible to continue spending at levels more suited to respond to a Great Depression or Great Recession — not an economy that is on the verge of overheating,” he said in a statement, according to The Washington Post.
Sen. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona has also suggested she thinks $3.5 trillion might be more than Democrats ought to spend.
“After reviewing the Senate Budget Committee’s outline, I have told Senate leadership and President Biden that I support many of the goals in this proposal,” she said last month, according to Fox News.
“I have also made clear that while I will support beginning this process, I do not support a bill that costs $3.5 trillion.”
Republican senators issued a letter on Tuesday saying that they will refuse to support any increase in the debt ceiling, which is necessary for the Democratic spending proposals.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell attacked the proposal but was powerless to stop it.
“People want to pretend this is just business as usual — just liberals doing liberal things using Senate procedure,” he said, according to the New York Times. “Make no mistake. This reckless taxing and spending spree is like nothing we’ve seen.”
Democrats are hoping to have a final package ready next month.
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