Biden Smacks Down Deficit Scolds

US Vice President Kamala Harris (L) and US Secretary of the Treasury Janet Yellen (R) listen while US President Joe Biden speaks about COVID-19 relief from the State Dining Room of the White House February 5, 2021, i... US Vice President Kamala Harris (L) and US Secretary of the Treasury Janet Yellen (R) listen while US President Joe Biden speaks about COVID-19 relief from the State Dining Room of the White House February 5, 2021, in Washington, DC. (Photo by Brendan Smialowski / AFP) (Photo by BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images) MORE LESS
Start your day with TPM.
Sign up for the Morning Memo newsletter

President Biden on Friday showed no inclination towards pumping the brakes on pushing his COVID-19 relief through Congress so that he could continue negotiations with the GOP lawmakers who are advocating for a much smaller package.

“They’re just not willing to go as far as I think we have to go,” Biden said of the Hill Republicans who have countered his $1.9 trillion proposal with one a third of that size. He made his remarks from the White House after meeting with Democratic House leaders.

Biden was forceful in saying he won’t get bogged down in a months-long negotiation or compromise with a bill that’s insufficient to meet the current crisis. “I am going to help the American people who are hurting now,” he said.

Biden’s comments came after the Senate kickstarted the so-called reconciliation process that, by circumventing a filibuster, will allow a COVID-19 response bill to move along without Republican support.

“What Republicans have proposed is either to do nothing or not enough,” Biden said, adding that he could not in “good conscience” go along with the GOP push to spend less. He also seemed to slap away concerns raised in a Thursday op-ed by Larry Summers, President Obama’s Treasury secretary, that the White House was overestimating what it would cost to address the COVID 19 outbreak’s economic consequences.

“The biggest is risk is not going too big, it’s if we go to small,” Biden said. He argued that by not spending enough, the Obama administration’s 2009 response package to the economic crisis prolonged the recovery.

His comments included some sharp words for the Republicans criticizing the cost of his proposals after going along with the deficit spending that happened under the Trump administration, including with GOP tax cuts that will cost the government trillions of dollars.

“All of the sudden, many of them have rediscovered fiscal restraint and the concern for the deficits,” Biden said. “But don’t kid yourself. This approach will come with a cost:  more pain, for more people, for longer than it has to be.”

Latest News

Notable Replies

  1. Pedal to the metal, Joe…

    There’s a new sheriff in town…

  2. pumping the breaks

    *brakes

  3. Avatar for kerf kerf says:

    Pump the breaks, and everything falls to pieces.

  4. Avatar for pshah pshah says:

    A much more polished way of saying, fuck-you, Republicans, which is what I would have said, but I will certainly allow it. Have I said I love this guy and that’s he’s already far exceeded my expectations?

  5. Avatar for bdtex bdtex says:

    Lotta typos in that article.

Continue the discussion at forums.talkingpointsmemo.com

366 more replies

Participants

Avatar for heart Avatar for playitagainrowlf Avatar for pluckyinky Avatar for meri Avatar for daytrader Avatar for cervantes Avatar for becca656 Avatar for chelsea530 Avatar for ralph_vonholst Avatar for 26degreesrising Avatar for left_in_washington_state Avatar for dickweed Avatar for pshah Avatar for thunderclapnewman Avatar for dommyluc Avatar for Anarchy_Bunker Avatar for redemptionsong Avatar for dannydorko Avatar for kelaine Avatar for philmore Avatar for thomaspaine Avatar for visionseeker Avatar for emiliano4 Avatar for LeeHarveyGriswold

Continue Discussion
Masthead Masthead
Founder & Editor-in-Chief:
Executive Editor:
Managing Editor:
Associate Editor:
Editor at Large:
General Counsel:
Publisher:
Head of Product:
Director of Technology:
Associate Publisher:
Front End Developer:
Senior Designer: