Well-known Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) went off about the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) that was negotiated by both Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV), in part because of a recent nonpartisan report that unveiled the bill would actually do quite little to lower the rate of inflation.
This past Saturday evening, Vice President Kamala Harris made a beeline to the Senate floor in order to make use of her tie-breaking vote 51-50 in order to push the bill up for debate before looking at any amendments. despite the fact that he voted in support of advancing the climate change and government spending bill, Sanders was quick to shout out about his worried concerning the new piece of legislation.
“I want to take a moment to say a few words about the so-called Inflation Reduction Act that we are debating this evening,” Sanders explained this past Saturday. “I say so-called because according to the [Congressional Budget Office] and other economic organizations that have studied this bill, it will in fact have a minimal impact on inflation.”
As pa of a correspondence sent over in response to Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC), the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) issued a report stating that the new bill would have little to no effect at all against the rapidly rising prices over the next year and a half.
“In calendar year 2022, enacting the bill would have a negligible effect on inflation, in CBO’s assessment,” explained the CBO. “In calendar year 2023, inflation would probably be between 0.1 percentage point lower and 0.1 percentage point higher under the bill than it would be under current law, CBO estimates.”
In response, Graham went after the Democrats for their “tax and spend proposal.”
“Democratic statements about the proposal are quite frankly wrong and misleading,” explained Graham.
It was also highlighted by Graham that the new Inflation Reduction Act, which is slated to cost taxpayers well over $700 billion, helps wealthy families via government subsidies while injuring the economy even further.
“Further, CBO indicates that the Obamacare subsidies can go to a family of four earning $304,000 a year. This is, by any reasonable definition, people who are doing well and not in need of subsidies from the government,” he explained. “Also, CBO confirmed my suspicion that the way the 15 percent corporate minimum tax is constructed would hurt economic growth.”
The CBO also stated that the IRA’s “proposed new corporate minimum tax would reduce the incentive for those large corporations to invest, primarily by limiting the tax benefit of accelerated depreciation and by decreasing the after-tax return on their new investment.”
“So what have we learned today from CBO? The bill does not lower inflation, it hurts economic growth and the Obamacare subsidies are absurd,” commented Graham.
The CBO reported once again that a prime section of the bill that seeks to ban pharmaceutical manufacturers from altering the prices of their drugs higher than the current rate of inflation would actually lead to an increase in the price of the respective drugs.
“The Congressional Budget Office projects that the inflation-rebate and negotiation provisions would increase the launch prices for drugs that are not yet on the market relative to what such prices would be otherwise,” explained the CBO.
Sanders also stated that his other senators need to focus on “the major crises facing working families.”
“If we cannot do that, not only will people continue to hurt and suffer, but to my mind, it is questionable how long we will remain a democracy,” he exclaimed on Saturday.
As of writing, it is expected that the final version of this new bill will be slightly altered in the wake of the debate as other senators in the same boat as Sanders try to add on their bloatware to the bill.