Wailing Commences After Another Democrat Priority Is Struck From the ‘Build Back Better’ Bill – Opinion

The negotiations over the “build back better” bill continue, and there’s more bad news this evening for the progressive wing. Over the past day, they’ve already had to endure the loss of the new IRS reporting provisions, which would have enabled government monitoring of the bank accounts of most Americans. Another priority is now in place.

This time, it’s Pete Buttigieg’s pet issue, paid family leave. Ironically, the Democrats at Capitol Hill couldn’t deliver even half of the non-government official paternity leave that the Secretary of Transportation was taking, even though he is heading into the third month of his ridiculously long period of paternity leaves in the middle a supply chain crisis. Opposition from Sen. Joe Manchin did the proposal in as well as the fact that the revenue just isn’t there to pay for it and keep the bill “deficit neutral.”

The bill is getting so complicated that you need to know exactly what it contains. It is clear that there are some things Republicans oppose. For example, another expansion of the Affordable Care Act and new housing subsidies, the latter of which have already caused havoc on the rental market, are part of what’s left. There’s also universal pre-K funding, which may or may not be a bad thing depending on one’s persuasion. It is at least a step down from government-paid “universal childcare.”

Nevertheless, it is absurd to note that the bill includes a Democrat payout to the wealthy. The SALT tax deduction is a two year-old, which Nancy Pelosi (who directly benefits) heavily promoted. Paid family leave has been eliminated, however Pelosi can still write off state taxes. Don’t ever let the Democrats claim they are the party of the working class.

Progressionists don’t like this response.

This was a mistake by the Democratic leadership from the start. The Democrats should have taken a small approach and gradually built to a real deal. Instead they made a lot of promises to their supporters, which they didn’t have the ability to keep. They now have their far-left base watching from the sidelines as they cut more progressive priorities. That’s been demoralizing, and there’s certainly a backlash building that may hurt turnout in 2022.

Tomorrow, the president will return to Capitol Hill to attempt a second long-shot effort to unite everyone. Pelosi is seeking a framework to reconcile so that the bill can be voted on. Yet, the progressives are still insisting that even a framework isn’t good enough. Given how badly Biden’s last visit went, I wouldn’t expect him to be able to bridge the gap.

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