Congress reconvenes this week, preparing to start debating the president’s Build Back Better proposals.
The administration will likely release part two of its Build Back Better agenda, the “American Families Plan,” within the next couple of weeks. It’s expected to be a $2+ trillion follow-on to the recently released $2.4 trillion “American Jobs Plan” and to include “human infrastructure” programs, such as childcare, as well as extensions and expansions of the earned income and child tax credits.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s rejection of the president’s jobs proposal has dimmed hopes for a bipartisan effort, forcing many Democrats to conclude they will need to resort to a partisan budget reconciliation process again. But the White House has signaled it is prepared to be flexible and is seeking to engage Republicans.
Biden has also released his FY22 discretionary funding framework after a two week delay reportedly triggered by a disagreement between Hill progressives and the Pentagon over the proper defense spending level.
- The $1.52 trillion “skinny” budget calls for a 16% increase in domestic spending, including a proposed 23.5% increase in funding for health agencies and boosts for education and environmental programs. Defense spending received a 1.7% increase.
Also ramping up: Bipartisan work on a major legislative effort to counter China and promote U.S. manufacturing and competitiveness.