AP Photo/Patrick Semansky
- President Joe Biden released his budget proposal for fiscal year 2024 on Thursday.
- The budget, which amounts to more of a wish list of priorities than viable policy, has already sparked pushback.
- Republicans are already hitting out at the spending included, and proposals to tax the rich more.
President Joe Biden has unveiled his budget proposal for the upcoming year, and it’s no surprise Republicans are mad about it.
Among Biden’s priorities: Reinstating monthly checks to parents, 12 weeks of paid family and medical leave, universal preschool, and increased taxes on the wealthy and investors to help pay for all of it.
It’s not a shocker, then, that the proposed budget did not sit well with anti-tax, anti-spending Republicans.
Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy, for example, was quick to criticize the proposal.
“President Biden just delivered his budget to Congress, and it is completely unserious,” he wrote on Twitter. “He proposes trillions in new taxes that you and your family will pay directly or through higher costs. Mr. President: Washington has a spending problem, NOT a revenue problem.”
He joined the chorus of other GOP lawmakers blasting the president’s budget, with Sen. Chuck Grassley, ranking member of the budget committee, calling it “a roadmap to fiscal ruin,” and Sen. Rick Scott writing on Twitter that the proposal is “INSANE.”
—Rick Scott (@SenRickScott) March 9, 2023
Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, a Republican who sits on the Senate Appropriations Committee, said in a statement that the budget “fits along” with the Biden administration’s “partisan budget tactics.”
“Let’s be clear – the budget put forward by President Biden today will not be enacted,” Capito said. “That is welcome news, as this misguided, bloated plan would subject American families to more taxes, waste, and government intrusion that they do not deserve during the continued challenging economic times that define this administration.”
Senator Susan Collins, a historically centrist Republican from Maine who serves as vice chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee, struck a more bipartisan tone. In a statement released with Senator Patty Murray, a Democrat who chairs the committee, the two senators said that they have a “real opportunity” and responsibility “to work together to make our country safer, more competitive, and do some good for the people we all represent back home.”
“The power of the purse rests with Congress, and we take that responsibility seriously,” Murray and Collins said.
However, that bipartisan ideal is unlikely to come to fruition, especially as the two parties continue to play chicken with a potentially devastating financial crisis hanging in the balance — which could all be avoided by raising the debt ceiling.
Biden has insisted that he will not negotiate the matter and said it should be done in a bipartisan way, as it was under former President Donald Trump, but Republicans said they will use the opportunity to cut spending.
They have not released a formal plan for doing so, but some reports have suggested they are eyeing cuts to welfare programs like SNAP, along with student-debt relief initiatives and environmental programs.
With Republicans holding the House majority, Biden’s proposals are headed for hurdles. But as the president said during his Thursday remarks, he’s ready to meet with the opposing party — if they show him what their plan is.
“I want to make it clear, I’m willing to meet with the Speaker anytime, tomorrow if he has his budget,” Biden said. “Lay it down, tell me what you want to do.”