Biden to use address to Congress to lay out plans for child care, police reform
President Biden will use his address to a joint session of Congress next week to lay out his next legislative proposal focusing on child care and education, the White House said Thursday.
Biden is also expected to use the Wednesday address to call for police reform and expanding access to health care, press secretary Jen Psaki told reporters.
“A core of that will be him laying out the specifics of the American Families Plan, his commitment to child care, to education, and to delivering on those middle class priorities,” Psaki said.
“On his mind are issues like police reform, health and his commitment to expanding access to health care,” she continued. “So I expect he’ll talk about a range of issues.”
Psaki noted that the speech is still being finalized and will not touch on all of his policy priorities.
Biden’s plan is expected to propose a families package totaling some $1 trillion that would cover child care, universal prekindergarten and community college, but The New York Times reported Thursday that the plan will not include an expansion of health care coverage or reduction to prescription drug prices.
Biden is expected to propose to pay for the plan by raising taxes on the wealthy. Bloomberg reported Thursday that Biden plans to propose nearly doubling the capital gains tax rate on wealthy individuals.
Asked about the plans for tax increase, Psaki said that the administration is still finalizing Biden’s proposal but reiterated his promise on the campaign trail not to raise taxes on those earning less than $400,000 per year.
“The president’s calculation is that there’s a need to modernize our infrastructure, there’s a need to invest in child care, there’s a need to invest in early childhood education and making our kids and the workers of the next generation more competitive and he should propose a way to pay for it,” she said. “His view is that should be on the backs, that can be on the backs of wealthiest Americans that can afford it and corporations and businesses who can afford it.”
Biden’s economic advisers do not believe such tax hikes would have a negative impact, Psaki said, though she emphasized the president remains open to compromise and negotiation with members of Congress on how to pay for a package.
He will unveil the families plan even as the fate of his $2.25 trillion infrastructure and climate package remains uncertain. Biden laid out the proposal last month, but it has received criticism from Republicans who say it’s too expensive and goes beyond traditional infrastructure investments.