Biden Bits: Build Back Better

Biden Tweets Logo. Image by Lenny Ghoul.

It’s Thursday.

For Thursday, July, 22nd, 2021, President Biden has received his daily brief. This afternoon he will receive a COVID-19 briefing from a member of the White House COVDI-19 response team. After his briefing he will offer remarks prior to signing into law H.R. 1652, the VOCA Fix to Sustain the Crime Victims Fund Act of 2021. At four this afternoon President Biden and Vice President Harris will meet with Union leaders and business leaders to discuss the need for the Bipartisan Infrastructure Framework.

President Biden has tweeted 1 time so far for Thursday, it will be shared down thread.

When Biden Bits was posted on Wednesday he had 3 tweets. He added another 3 tweets giving him a Wednesday Tweeting Total of 6 tweets and 0 retweets.

All the added tweets plus the first one for Thursday focus on his Build Back Better plans.

As I mentioned yesterday, and probably, every day before that since the end of March, the Build Back Better agenda consists of three and half plans rolled into one catchy phrase; the American Rescue Plan, the American Jobs Plan now the Bipartisan Infrastructure Framework, the American Families Plan, and the Made in America Tax Plan.

The American Families Plan covers both tweets.

American Families Plan. White House.gov.

Paid family and medical leave supports workers and families and is a critical investment in the strength and equity of our economy. President Biden’s American Families Plan will:

  • Create a national comprehensive paid family and medical leave program. The program will ensure workers receive partial wage replacement to take time to bond with a new child, care for a seriously ill loved one, deal with a loved one’s military deployment, find safety from sexual assault, stalking, or domestic violence, heal from their own serious illness, or take time to deal with the death of a loved one. It will guarantee twelve weeks of paid parental, family, and personal illness/safe leave by year 10 of the program, and also ensure workers get three days of bereavement leave per year starting in year one. The program will provide workers up to $4,000 a month, with a minimum of two-thirds of average weekly wages replaced, rising to 80 percent for the lowest wage workers. We estimate this program will cost $225 billion over a decade.
American Families Plan. White House.gov.
American Families Plan. White House.gov.
  • President Biden is calling for a national partnership with states to offer free, high-quality, accessible, and inclusive preschool to all three-and four-year-olds, benefitting five million children and saving the average family $13,000, when fully implementedThis historic $200 billion investment in America’s future will first prioritize high-need areas and enable communities and families to choose the settings that work best for them. The President’s plan will also ensure that all publicly-funded preschool is high-quality, with low student-to-teacher ratios, high-quality and developmentally appropriate curriculum, and supportive classroom environments that are inclusive for all students. The President’s plan will leverage investments in tuition-free community college and teacher scholarships to support those who wish to earn a bachelor’s degree or another credential that supports their work as an educator, or to become an early childhood educator. And, educators will receive job-embedded coaching, professional development, and wages that reflect the importance of their work. All employees in participating pre-K programs and Head Start will earn at least $15 per hour, and those with comparable qualifications will receive compensation commensurate with that of kindergarten teachers. These investments will give American children a head start and pave the way for the best-educated generation in U.S. history.
American Families Plan. White House.gov.
  • Offer two years of free community college to all Americans, including DREAMers. The current crisis has led to a steep college enrollment decline, particularly for low-income students and students of color. As of Fall 2020, high-minority and high-poverty high schools saw a 9.4 percent and 11.4 percent decline in college enrollment, respectively. But even before the pandemic, cost remained a barrier to attending and graduating from community college for many Americans. President Biden’s $109 billion plan will ensure that first-time students and workers wanting to reskill can enroll in a community college to earn a degree or credential for free. Students can use the benefit over three years and, if circumstances warrant, up to four years, recognizing that many students’ lives and other responsibilities can make full-time enrollment difficult. If all states, territories, and Tribes participate, about 5.5 million students would pay $0 in tuition and fees.
  • Provide up to approximately $1,400 in additional assistance to low-income students by increasing the Pell Grant award. While nearly 7 million students depend on Pell Grants, the grant has not kept up with the rising cost of college. Over the last 50 years, the value of Pell Grants has plummeted. The maximum grant went from covering nearly 80 percent of the cost of a four-year college degree to under 30 percent — leading millions of low-income students to take out debt to finance their education. One in three community college students receive Pell Grants to pay for their education. Among students of color, nearly 60 percent of Black, half of American Indian or Alaska Native, almost half of Latino, and over one-third of Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander students rely on Pell Grants to pay for college. The American Families Plan will increase the maximum Pell Grant award by approximately $1,400, a down payment on President Biden’s commitment to double the maximum award. The plan also allows DREAMers to access Pell Grants.
  • Increase college retention and completion rates. An education beyond high school can lead to higher pay, financial stability, social mobility, and better health outcomes. It also has public benefits such as a reduction in crime rates and higher civic engagement. However, far too many students enter college but do not graduate. Research shows that only approximately three out of five students finish any type of degree or certificate program within six years. To complete, students need additional support. The President is proposing a bold $62 billion grant program to invest in completion and retention activities at colleges and universities that serve high numbers of low-income students, particularly community colleges. States, territories, and Tribes will receive grants to provide funding to colleges that adopt innovative, proven solutions for student success, including wraparound services ranging from child care and mental health services to faculty and peer mentoring; emergency basic needs grants; practices that recruit and retain diverse faculty; transfer agreements between colleges; and evidence-based remediation programs.
  • Provide two years of subsidized tuition and expand programs in high-demand fields at HBCUs, TCUs, and MSIs. Research has found that HBCUs, TCUs, and MSIs are vital to helping underrepresented students move to the top of the income ladder. For example, while HBCUs are only three percent of four-year universities, their graduates make up approximately 80 percent of Black judges, half of Black lawyers and doctors, and 25 percent of Black undergraduates earning STEM degrees. Yet, these institutions have significantly less resources than other top colleges and universities, undermining their ability to grow and support more students. President Biden is calling on Congress to make a historic investment in HBCU, TCU, and MSI affordability. Specifically, he is calling for a new $39 billion program that provides two years of subsidized tuition for students from families earning less than $125,000 enrolled in a four-year HBCU, TCU, or MSI. The President is also calling for $5 billion to expand existing institutional aid grants to HBCUs, TCUs, and MSIs, which can be used by these institutions to strengthen their academic, administrative, and fiscal capabilities, including by creating or expanding educational programs in high-demand fields (e.g., STEM, computer sciences, nursing, and allied health), with an additional $2 billion directed towards building a pipeline of skilled health care workers with graduate degrees. These investments, combined with the $45 billion proposed in the American Jobs Plan targeted to these institutions, will enable America’s HBCUs, TCUs, and MSIs to tackle longstanding inequities in postsecondary education and make the U.S. more competitive on the global stage.

His one tweet so far focuses on the Made in America Tax Plan.

The Made In America Tax Plan was tacked on the bottom of the American Jobs Plan back on March 31st, 2021, when the White House released the plan.

Here are the bullet points:

  • Set the Corporate Tax Rate at 28 percent. The President’s tax plan will ensure that corporations pay their fair share of taxes by increasing the corporate tax rate to 28 percent. His plan will return corporate tax revenue as a share of the economy to around its 21st century average from before the 2017 tax law and well below where it stood before the 1980s. This will help fund critical investments in infrastructure, clean energy, R&D, and more to maintain the competitiveness of the United States and grow the economy.
  • Discourage Offshoring by Strengthening the Global Minimum Tax for U.S. Multinational Corporations. Right now, the tax code rewards U.S. multinational corporations that shift profits and jobs overseas with a tax exemption for the first ten percent return on foreign assets, and the rest is taxed at half the domestic tax rate. Moreover, the 2017 tax law allows companies to use the taxes they pay in high-tax countries to shield profits in tax havens, encouraging offshoring of jobs. The President’s tax reform proposal will increase the minimum tax on U.S. corporations to 21 percent and calculate it on a country-by-country basis so it hits profits in tax havens. It will also eliminate the rule that allows U.S. companies to pay zero taxes on the first 10 percent of return when they locate investments in foreign countries. By creating incentives for investment here in the United States, we can reward companies that help to grow the U.S. economy and create a more level playing field between domestic companies and multinationals. 
  • End the Race to the Bottom Around the World. The United States can lead the world to end the race to the bottom on corporate tax rates. A minimum tax on U.S. corporations alone is insufficient. That can still allow foreign corporations to strip profits out of the United States, and U.S. corporations can potentially escape U.S. tax by inverting and switching their headquarters to foreign countries. This practice must end. President Biden is also proposing to encourage other countries to adopt strong minimum taxes on corporations, just like the United States, so that foreign corporations aren’t advantaged and foreign countries can’t try to get a competitive edge by serving as tax havens. This plan also denies deductions to foreign corporations on payments that could allow them to strip profits out of the United States if they are based in a country that does not adopt a strong minimum tax. It further replaces an ineffective provision in the 2017 tax law that tried to stop foreign corporations from stripping profits out of the United States. The United States is now seeking a global agreement on a strong minimum tax through multilateral negotiations. This provision makes our commitment to a global minimum tax clear. The time has come to level the playing field and no longer allow countries to gain a competitive edge by slashing corporate tax rates.
  • Prevent U.S. Corporations from inverting or claiming tax havens as their residence. Under current law, U.S. corporations can acquire or merge with a foreign company to avoid U.S. taxes by claiming to be a foreign company, even though their place of management and operations are in the United States. President Biden is proposing to make it harder for U.S. corporations to invert. This will backstop the other reforms which should address the incentive to do so in the first place.
  • Deny Companies Expense Deductions for Offshoring Jobs and Credit Expenses for Onshoring. President Biden’s reform proposal will also make sure that companies can no longer write off expenses that come from offshoring jobs. This is a matter of fairness. U.S. taxpayers shouldn’t subsidize companies shipping jobs abroad. Instead, President Biden is also proposing to provide a tax credit to support onshoring jobs.
  • Eliminate a Loophole for Intellectual Property that Encourages Offshoring Jobs and Invest in Effective R&D Incentives. The President’s ambitious reform of the tax code also includes reforming the way it promotes research and development. This starts with a complete elimination of the tax incentives in the Trump tax law for “Foreign Derived Intangible Income” (FDII), which gave corporations a tax break for shifting assets abroad and is ineffective at encouraging corporations to invest in R&D. All of the revenue from repealing the FDII deduction will be used to expand more effective R&D investment incentives.
  • Enact A Minimum Tax on Large Corporations’ Book Income. The President’s tax reform will also ensure that large, profitable corporations cannot exploit loopholes in the tax code to get by without paying U.S. corporate taxes. A 15 percent minimum tax on the income corporations use to report their profits to investors—known as “book income”—will backstop the tax plan’s other ambitious reforms and apply only to the very largest corporations.
  • Eliminate Tax Preferences for Fossil Fuels and Make Sure Polluting Industries Pay for Environmental Clean Up. The current tax code includes billions of dollars in subsidies, loopholes, and special foreign tax credits for the fossil fuel industry. As part of the President’s commitment to put the country on a path to net-zero emissions by 2050, his tax reform proposal will eliminate all these special preferences. The President is also proposing to restore payments from polluters into the Superfund Trust Fund so that polluting industries help fairly cover the cost of cleanups.
  • Ramping Up Enforcement Against Corporations. All of these measures will make it much harder for the largest corporations to avoid or evade taxes by eliminating parts of the tax code that are too easily abused. This will be paired with an investment in enforcement to make sure corporations pay their fair share. Typical workers’ wages are reported to the IRS and their employer withholds, so they pay all the taxes they owe. By contrast, large corporations have at their disposal loopholes they exploit to avoid or evade tax liabilities, and an army of high-paid tax advisors and accountants who help them get away with this. At the same time, an under-funded IRS lacks the capacity to scrutinize these suspect tax maneuvers: A decade ago, essentially all large corporations were audited annually by the IRS; today, audit rates are less than 50 percent. This plan will reverse these trends, and make sure that the Internal Revenue Service has the resources it needs to effectively enforce the tax laws against corporations. This will be paired with a broader enforcement initiative to be announced in the coming weeks that will address tax evasion among corporations and high-income Americans.

Let’s talk about President Biden’s town-hall hosted by CNN. I don’t want to talk about the whole thing, as I didn’t watch last nights town-hall.

But this morning when I got my first cup of coffee, I saw this from CNN Fact-checker Daniel Dale (at the time of writing this his fact-check had not be published).

At around the same time I saw this, the White House had published a transcript from his CNN townhall; as I’ve not been able this morning to find the clipped vaccine comments, and Dale hasn’t given us the claims statements he is referencing above we will use the transcript.

Disclaimer these are just guesses using Dale’s context clues in the tweet that lists the 3 claims about the vaccine, I might not have the full claims, but just the gist.

(1) There’s a simple, basic proposition: If you’re vaccinated, you’re not going to be hospitalized, you’re not going to be in an ICU unit, and you’re not going to die. 

(2) And so, what I say to people who are worried about a new pandemic is: Get vaccinated.  If you’re vaccinated, even if you do catch the “virus,” quote, unquote — like people talk about it in normal terms — you’re in overwhelm- — not many people do.  If you do, you’re not likely to get sick.  You’re probably going to be symptomless.  You’re not going to be in a position where you — where your life is in danger. 

(3) But again, one last thing.  I — we don’t talk enough to you about this, I don’t think.  One last thing that’s really important is: We’re not in a position where we think that any virus — including the Delta virus, which is much more transmissible and more deadly in terms of non — unvaccinated people — the vi- — the various shots that people are getting now cover that.  They’re — you’re okay.  You’re not going to — you’re not going to get COVID if you have these vaccinations. 

White House.gov. 07/22/2021 (comments from 07/21/2021.)

So on first blush Dale is correct, 3 is the worst, and before we get to why that is, I do understand what President Biden was attempting. He wants more people vaccinated, so he is attempting to make the idea of being vaccinated more appealing.

But it’s wrong. He should not rose color glass this to the American people. With the Delta variant on the rise, more states running out of ICU beds, with more people getting the virus. He should just be honest.

Which he did in quote number 2. He explains we are less likely to get sick if we are vaccinated, he explains that those worried about catching the variant should just get vaccinated if they aren’t already.

But number 3’s quote is going to make people’s teeth itch. Because the vaccine is not a cure, it does not make us immune, it also makes President Biden seem out of sync with the whole medical and scientific community.

Plus just on July 20th, 2021, as Axios reported; A White House official and a staff member for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) have both tested positive for COVID-19 after attending the same reception last week.

They quote a White House Official as saying “We know that there will be breakthrough cases, but as this instance shows, cases in vaccinated individuals are typically mild.”

Like I said, the messaging has to be consistent, we shouldn’t sugar coat the issue, or give huge soundbytes to the anti-vaxxers.

I’m 95 percent sure this will be asked about in today’s press briefing and the White House will work to “clarify” his comments.

My whole point is this, it’s a huge misstep by President Biden attempting to fish story the vaccines worth. It is worthy to get vaccinated, it’s a step toward the coronavirus being something like the pneumonia or the flu where we could–possibly get vaccinated yearly to contain the virus to prevent future pandemics of this nature. There is zero need to make it seem like once vaccinated =’s immunity.

Also, note, this misstep hinders communities like L.A. county from requiring masks. Masks are effective, not 100 percent, but if the President says the vaccine makes it so “You’re not going to — you’re not going to get COVID,” it causes a ripple effect.

Speaking of the vaccine two more topics of interest.

First, as President Biden was departing Ohio, to head back to Washington, he was asked about the changed tone of Fox News on the coronavirus vaccine.

Q: Mr. President, what do you think of the Republicans and Fox News changing their tune on the vaccine?

President Biden: Well, rather than be critical of it, I thank them for it.  I think it’s a matter of — first of all, in truth, I don’t know how many of them believed what they were saying.  They may have really believed it — the things that they’ve been saying. And — but I think once the realization occurred that this virus is only killing primarily those people who had not been vaccinated, I think it was sort of, as we Catholics say, a bit of an “epiphany” for them.  You know, it was a — like a — you know, conversion on the way to Damascus or something. But I think it became real, and I — I’m glad they had the courage to say what they said.  And hopefully it will have some impact.

White House.gov. 07/22/2021 (comments made on July 21st, 2021.)

Second…we turn to former Presidential doctor now Congressman Ronny Jackson (R-TX)

He adds not quoted; (this is just the gist of his comments, cause he speaks real fast), but the gist is the Texas Democrats that got sick with coronavirus spread it to the White House and the Speakers Office, and the MSM isn’t covering it.

From the linked Axios story above; Driving the news: The Pelosi staffer helped usher a delegation of Democratic Texas lawmakers around the Capitol last week. Six of those lawmakers, who flew to Washington to block the Texas legislature from changing the state’s voting laws, have since tested positive.

CNN: Six Texas House Democrats test positive for Covid-19 in Washington…

Another Texas state House Democrat who traveled to Washington, DC, last week has tested positive for Covid-19, an official with the group told CNN on Monday evening, bringing the number of infected legislators to six. The lawmakers are part of the group that left Texas, flying from Austin to Washington to break the state House’s quorum and block Republicans from passing a restrictive new voting law. Officials with the group told CNN that all of the lawmakers participating in the quorum break trip are fully vaccinated, including those who have tested positive for Covid-19.

CNN. 07/19/2021.

NBC News; Sixth member of Texas Democratic delegation tests positive for Covid…

A sixth member of the delegation of Texas Democrats in Washington, D.C. tested positive for Covid-19, a spokesperson told NBC News on Monday.

NBC News. 07/19/2021.

Yeah, nobody covered it.

Also this:

The article is from May 2021.

This is a side note, it made me lol. In his town hall, President Biden talked about how he’s not and the Democratic party as whole is not looking to defund the police. He also spoke about the Q-Anon bullshit that Democrats suck blood out of children to please the devil. On his return to the White House, he spoke with the press again.

THE PRESIDENT:  We answered enough questions today.  The only reason I’m stopping: I feel badly you’re here this hour of the night.

Q: Mr. President, can you clarify what you said about no — that there’s no — no one in the Democratic Party is anti-police?

THE PRESIDENT:  I didn’t say that.

Q: I know that you said you don’t want to defund the police —

THE PRESIDENT:  I said that that — that is not the Democratic Party’s position. 

Q: Okay.

THE PRESIDENT:  I’m the Democratic Party; I am President.  So is the Speaker of the House and so is the –- the Majority Leader.  We are not the defunding the police.

Q: Okay.  And are there people who — in the Democratic Party, who want to defund the police?

THE PRESIDENT:  Are there people in the Republican Party who think we’re sucking the blood out of kids?
 
END

White House.gov. 07/22/2021 (comments made on July 21st, 2021.)

The daily presser is scheduled to start at 12:15 p.m. D.C., time. Today’s briefing includes special guest the Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo.

The reason for Commerce Secretary Raimondo’s presence in the press briefing room:

From the shared link:

Later today, Secretary Raimondo will address the White House Briefing Room to further lay out the Biden Administration’s vision for how this historic investment will help every community not only rebuild their local economy but also reimagine it for the future.

“President Biden’s American Rescue Plan delivered direct relief to the American people and was the first step to energizing the American economy following the devastating impacts of the coronavirus pandemic,” said Secretary Raimondo. “Now, its medium-term investments will allow communities around the country not only rebuild but reimagine their economy for the future.”

“With an emphasis on equity, EDA’s investments made possible by the American Rescue Plan will directly benefit communities that have been denied full access to economic prosperity and who have been disproportionately impacted by the coronavirus pandemic,” Secretary Raimondo continued. “We will work with local communities across the country on innovative new approaches to ensure that we can increase American competitiveness by strengthening our workforce, businesses, and communities and build back better in regions across the country.”

Commerce.gov. 07/22/2021.

President Biden remarks are scheduled for 2:15 p.m. D.C., time.

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About Tiff 2591 Articles
Member of the Free Press who is politically homeless and a political junkie.