Here’s what’s in Biden’s new sprawling budget proposal
▶ Watch Video: Biden’s budget proposal to call for higher taxes on billionaires
Washington — The White House has released the President Biden’s budget proposal for the 2024 fiscal year, detailing the administration’s priorities for advancing his economic agenda as he prepares to mount an expected reelection bid.
The 182-page budget plan lays out the administration’s funding requests to Congress for 21 executive branch departments and agencies comprising the sprawling executive branch. While Congress ultimately determines which programs get funded and which don’t, the document showcases the president’s vision for the future and serves as a starting point for the administration’s negotiations with lawmakers.
The proposal is largely a continuation of Mr. Biden’s economic policies during the first half of his term, and includes many Democratic priorities that have failed to become law in previous pieces of legislation, like the bipartisan infrastructure law and the Inflation Reduction Act.
“Now, it is time to finish the job, building on the ambitious progress we have made with new investments in America’s future,” Mr. Biden says in the budget. “My 2024 Budget is a blue-collar blueprint to rebuild America in a fiscally responsible way that leaves no one behind.”
The White House said the president’s proposal would shrink the deficit by nearly $3 trillion over the next decade by raising taxes on wealthy Americans and corporations, including by increasing Medicare taxes on high earners and establishing a minimum tax for the ultrawealthy. Any tax hikes are dead on arrival in the GOP-controlled House.
White House officials noted that the U.S. economy has had the strongest three-year performance of any G7 country, and say the budget builds on that growth by reducing the deficit and supporting the workforce.
Here are some of the highlights from the president’s budget:
Higher taxes on wealthy Americans and corporations
The president’s budget would implement a 25% minimum tax on the wealthiest 0.01% of Americans, which would “apply to all of their income, including appreciated assets,” according to the budget.
The president also proposes increasing the corporate tax rate to 28%. During the Trump administration, Congress slashed the corporate tax rate from 35% to 21%. The plan would also quadruple the tax on stock buybacks and close loopholes while ensuring that “no one earning less than $400,000 a year will pay a penny more in new taxes, period.”
The budget would also raise Medicare taxes on incomes above $400,000. Through this and through redirecting revenue from the Net Investment Income Tax trust fund, the White House says the plan would extend the solvency of the Medicare Trust Fund for at least 25 years without cutting benefits.
Restoring the expanded child tax credit
The president’s plan would expand the child tax credit from $2,000 to $3,000 for each child child six years and older, and to $3,600 for children under six. The budget would also permanently make the credit fully refundable. The White House highlighted the drop in child poverty that took place when the American Rescue Plan provided an expanded child tax credit.
No cuts to Social Security benefits, but no overarching plan to keep the program solvent
The president insists that Social Security benefits won’t be cut under his watch, but the budget does not detail a plan for keeping the program financially sound well into the future.
“The Administration looks forward to working with the Congress to responsibly strengthen Social Security by ensuring that high-income individuals pay their fair share,” the document says.
On a call with reporters, senior administration officials said that Republicans pose the biggest threat for potential benefit cuts, and insisted that any Social Security cuts are off the table in upcoming negotiations with the GOP-controlled House.
The budget does say it would provide an increase of $1.4 billion, 10% more than the 2023 enacted level, to increase staff and improve customer service at Social Security Administration field offices.
As CBS News has previously reported, the Social Security trust fund in about a decade will only be able to pay out what it’s currently taking in, which would be a big benefit cut for current beneficiaries unless Congress acts.
A 15% budget increase for the IRS
The president’s plan would provide a total of $14.1 billion in funding for the IRS, or 15% above the enacted 2023 level.
Paid family and medical leave
The president’s budget calls on Congress to provide up to 12 weeks of leave for eligible workers to bond with a new child, care for a sick loved one or heal from illness. It also calls on Congress to force employers to provide seven protected sick days each year to every worker. The paid leave program would be administered by the Social Security Administration, the budget says.
A Democratic-controlled Congress couldn’t pass paid family leave earlier in Mr. Biden’s term.
Caps insulin price tag
As of January, insulin is already capped at $35 per month for seniors and other Medicare enrollees. The president’s budget would also cap the price of insulin products at $35 a month on the commercial market.
More police funding
The president’s budget includes $19.4 billion over 10 years for crime preventions strategies and $5 billion over the next decade for community violence intervention. The president has emphasized that the country needs more police officers on the streets, not fewer, hoping to rebut Republican attacks over crime and policing.
More border agents
Another aspect of the budget the White House highlighted includes funding for U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to hire 350 more border patrol agents. It also includes funding for an additional 460 processing assistants at CBP and Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
That request for more personnel funding comes as the administration prepares to deal with an expected influx of migrants at the border this summer.
Funding to “out-compete” China
The plan also includes multiple areas of funding to support the president’s goal of out-competing China, including $2 billion in funding over five years to support investments in “hard” critical international infrastructure to compete with projects funded by China.
More funding for cancer research
Cutting cancer death rates is a personal priority for the president, whose son, Beau, died of a brain tumor in adulthood. The budget calls for a $7.8 billion investment for the National Cancer Institute, and a $1 billion increase for the Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health to support cancer research and breakthroughs.
Funding and tax incentives to increase housing opportunities for low-income households
The proposal also includes $59 billion in funding and tax incentives to increase the affordable housing supply for low-income households, and would give $10 billion in funding to help state and local jurisdictions remove restricting zoning barriers. The budget would also provide $10 billion in mandatory funding for a new First Generation Down Payment Assistance program to bridge the racial, ethnic and wealth gaps in home ownership.
Senate Appropriations Committee Chair Patty Murray, a Democrat, and Vice Chair Susan Collins, a Republican, said they will work quickly toward an agreement, and draft each of the 12 appropriations bills in a “bipartisan, timely way.”
“Now that the president has released his budget, we are pressing forward with the work of writing our nation’s spending bills as quickly as possible,” they said in a joint statement. “We have a real opportunity—and an important responsibility—to work together to make our country safer, more competitive, and do some good for the people we all represent back home. The power of the purse rests with Congress, and we take that responsibility seriously.”