Opinion: President Biden’s budget is a blueprint for how we can help working families succeed

President Joe Biden delivers the State of the Union address to a joint session of Congress at the U.S. Capitol, Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2023, in Washington, as Vice President Kamala Harris and House Speaker Kevin McCarthy of Calif., applaud. (Jacquelyn Martin, Pool)

By George Arf

April 4, 2024

“This budget is an opportunity for bipartisan action that will lower costs, support working families, and strengthen our economy,” writes Pleasant Prairie resident in an op-ed.

In his State of the Union address and budget proposal for the next fiscal year, President Joe Biden delivered a blueprint for helping working families, seniors, and small businesses in Wisconsin succeed. By continuing to lower costs, asking big corporations to pay their fair share, delivering tax relief for the middle class, and protecting important programs like Social Security and Medicare, his plan addresses some of our most critical challenges. Now, it’s time for Republicans in Congress to work with him to make these ideas a reality.

First, the President prioritizes tax fairness in his budget and delivers a common sense plan to hold big corporations and billionaires accountable while cutting taxes for lower and middle income families across the country. For too long, tax policies have let the biggest corporations and wealthiest Americans pay lower rates than others. Special interests have written loopholes designed specifically to help Big Pharma, Big Oil, and wealthy executives avoid paying their fair share, only making the problem worse. The President has a plan to address this.

His budget increases the minimum tax rate for billion-dollar corporations, closes costly loopholes in the tax code, and forces billionaires to pay their fair share. Meanwhile, millions of children will be lifted out of poverty and working people will see lower taxes thanks to an expansion of the child tax credit and the earned income tax credit.

With those at the top finally paying their fair share, we have resources to make investments that grow the middle class and lower costs.

One way the President’s budget accomplishes this is by doubling down on successful programs, like the Inflation Reduction Act. Already, this law is lowering prescription drug costs for Wisconsin seniors on Medicare. His budget would extend key provisions of the Inflation Reduction Act to those with private insurance. That means expanding the $35 cap on insulin and inhaler costs and annual $2,000 out-of-pocket prescription drug cost cap – helping even more Wisconsinites afford the life-saving and life-sustaining medication they need.

The budget also makes meaningful investments into programs that help Wisconsinites afford housing and child care. New tax credits will help expand affordable housing options by supporting development, renovation, and preservation of housing units, and providing additional assistance for first-time homebuyers. Another program would guarantee affordable child care for working families making less than $200,000 per year, with most eligible families paying no more than $10 per day for care until their child enters kindergarten.

And while Republicans in Congress continue to threaten the future of Social Security and Medicare, the President’s budget takes serious steps to extend the solvency of these programs. With additional taxes on the wealthiest Americans, these programs – as well as access to them – can be preserved for future generations.

Now, it’s time for Republicans in Congress to work with President Biden and Democrats to make these ideas a reality. This budget is an opportunity for bipartisan action that will lower costs, support working families, and strengthen our economy. After months of failing to pass government funding for the current fiscal year, Republicans in Congress need to start doing their job and support programs that will improve the lives of so many Americans.

We hope Congressmen Bryan Steil, Derrick Van Orden, and the rest of Wisconsin’s Congressional delegation will make the right choice and fight for working families.

RELATED: Biden’s 2025 budget prioritizes lowering costs for families, taxing the rich

Author

  • George Arf

    George Arf lives in Pleasant Prairie Wisconsin and is an advocate for Wisconsin seniors and working families. In addition to serving in the US Army, he is a retired mechanical designer and former small business owner.

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