Washington, D.C. — John Podesta, founder of the Center for American Progress Action Fund and chair of CAP Action’s board of directors, released the following statement today on Senate Democrats’ budget reconciliation bill:
With the impending passage of the bipartisan infrastructure bill, and the introduction of the Build Back Better agenda through reconciliation, President Joe Biden and Democrats in Congress are tackling the major challenges that have held back the rebuilding of the middle class and America’s economic growth for decades.
Taking the time to find bipartisan consensus on roads, bridges, and other infrastructure is a credit to President Biden and congressional Democrats, who did the painstaking work to find common ground that has eluded Washington for far too long. But the Build Back Better agenda in reconciliation sets the stage for a whole new era of American economic growth based on rebuilding the middle class.
Today’s U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report underscores that sustained economic growth requires investing in clean energy to combat climate change. It depends on supporting families through child care, home care, and paid leave. It depends on making life more affordable by lowering prescription drug costs, increasing Medicare coverage for dental and vision, and enacting middle-class tax cuts such as the child tax credit. All of this will help American families reach their potential, which will in turn help the economy reach its true potential. Immigration reform alone—bringing immigrants fully into the economy rather than relegating them to the shadows—will help the American economy grow and win against the country’s global competitors.
President Biden and this Democratic Congress have an opportunity to finally reshape the American economy to grow and compete in the 21st century. America can lead again, and it can all be paid for by simply asking the wealthy who gained so much during the pandemic to pay their fair share. The alternative is an America that falls much further behind, families left to struggle, and a country left to fry as a result of climate change.