It is very disconcerting to see West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin, Arizona Senator Kyrsten Sinema, and some moderate Democrats in the House of Representatives, make clear their opposition to the proposed $3.5 trillion “Social Infrastructure” legislation, while supporting the $1 trillion “Physical Infrastructure” bill that has bipartisan support in the Senate.
The “Physical Infrastructure” bill covers roads, bridges, airports, rails, water systems, clean drinking water, cleaning the environment, and high speed internet access, and is urgently needed, gaining a 69-30 bipartisan vote in the Senate.
But the “Social Infrastructure” bill, over TEN years, NOT one, would cover many urgent matters, including:
Expansion of Child Tax Credits and establishment of paid family and medical leave
Expansion of Medicare to include dental, hearing, and vision benefits and possibly lower the Medicare age from 65 to 60
Funding for Elder Care and Disabled Care in their homes
Funding for Child Care so young children would have two years of publicly funded pre-Kindergarten Education
Funding for two years of Community College Education for students after high school
Funding for Climate Change legislation and promotion of electric vehicles
Provisions to lower the price of prescription drugs
Infrastructure investment for Native American communities
Increase in taxes on wealthy people and corporations, which in many cases pay ZERO taxes right now
Bolstering the Internal Revenue Service’s staff and enforcement resources to do its job of raising tax collection
If passed into law, it would be the biggest expansion of the social safety net since the Great Society of Lyndon B. Johnson in the 1960s!
The lie that is being spread is that the $3.5 trillion bill is all in one year, when it is actually over ten years, or $350 billion per year.
Meanwhile, the defense budget, bloated with lots of projects that are not needed but bolstering the profits of defense corporations which pay bribes to get their programs funded, is $700 billion per year, double the amount for the infrastructure bill.
This means that defense over the next ten years would be 7 TRILLION, double the social spending, but of course, defense is presented as one year at a time, while social reforms are portrayed as all at once, when it is totally false!
It is urgent that both pieces of legislation pass, and not be derailed by lies and deception. Government for all the people, not just the privileged, is long overdue!