Joe Biden, leaving for Europe with an agenda full of delicate bilateral and multilateral meetings, from the G20 in Rome to the UN COP26 on the climate in Glasgow, launches a new halved version of his great social and environmental plan Build Back Better . A version that he hopes will become the compromise on which the Democratic Party can join. And its leadership, not only in the United States but on the international stage, will relaunch.
A compromise for the future of the White House
After going to Congress for last minute talks, the President raised the curtain on a project to strengthen welfare and fight climate change worth perhaps 1,850 billion dollars, against the 3,500 billion initially proposed. He called it a “compromise”, where no one – you read both the progressive and moderate currents of the Democratic Party – gets everything they asked for. But which also represents a “historic investment in the country, fiscally responsible and fully paid”.
Waiting for a vote
Biden said that the very fate of his presidency and the majority in the Democratic Parliament will depend on the success of the plan, that is, on a vote that turns it into law as soon as possible. At the same time, that approval, which must take place with all the democratic votes to overcome the republican opposition, should unlock a parallel vote in favor of the already ready one trillion infrastructure plan, which enjoys bipartisan support instead. Negotiations between the Democrats to get to the vote in the courtroom could, however, take at least days. In the short term, there are still no declarations of explicit optimism by the most prominent exponents of the moderate and progressive wing.
For the climate 550 billion dollars
Among the cornerstones of the revised version, the plan allocates 550 billion, claimed as the largest federal investment against the greenhouse effect. Funds dedicated above all (320 billion) to incentives for electric vehicles and for the energy transition to renewable sources from fossil, gas and coal.
On the social front, universal nursery and childcare benefits survive, which will bring down poverty, for a total of 600 billion dollars. On the other hand, national programs of paid family leave and reduction of drug costs appear, as well as two years of free basic public college for students.