Democrats Pass Massive Economic Bill Along Party Lines in U.S. Senate, Heads To House Next
WASHINGTON (AP/KVRR) – The estimated $740 billion economic package from Democrats is nowhere near what President Joe Biden first envisioned with his effort to rebuild America’s public infrastructure and family support systems.
The Senate has approved the slimmer but still substantial compromise package 51-50 with Vice President Kamala Harris casting the tie-breaking vote.
It heads next to the House.
It’s made up of health care, climate change and deficit-reduction strategies, in hopes of tackling inflation and making the most sizable investment ever in fighting global warming.
A major component is capping out-of-pocket prescription drug costs for seniors in the Medicare program at $2,000 a year.
It also applies $300 billion federal deficit reduction.
No Republicans supported the legislation.
North Dakota Republican Sen. Kevin Cramer said, “Instead of taking some steps to fix the economic crisis, the Biden Administration and the Democrats are doubling-down on the dumb policies that created the mess in the first place.”
Sen. John Hoeven, North Dakota’s senior senator, said “This bill provides for higher taxes and more spending. It’s something that should not be passed at all at anytime but certainly not when we have stagflation, meaning high inflation and a stagnating economy.”
Democratic U.S. senators in Minnesota are celebrating the bill’s passage.
“This is a big, big deal. With this bill, we’re taking huge steps to lower the cost of prescription drugs and tackle the climate crisis, all while significantly reducing our national debt.” said Sen. Amy Klobuchar.
“This is a historic bill that meets the moment. It fights inflation and reduces the federal deficit. It’s takes on the climate emergency, creates a clean energy future and spurs domestic clean energy production. It lowers prescription drug costs, and makes health care more affordable for millions of families. And, it requires big corporations making a billion or more in profits to finally pay their fair share in taxes,” said Sen. Tina Smith.