Buttigieg defends Biden’s ‘responsible’ budget plan amid bipartisan criticism
Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg on Sunday defended President Biden’s $6 trillion budget proposal amid criticism coming from both Republican and Democratic figures, hailing it as “responsible.”
“Fox News Sunday” host Shannon Bream asked Buttigieg to respond to former Obama administration official Larry Summers, who recently warned against inflation brought on by some of Biden’s policies.
“This is a responsible budget and importantly all of the proposals for spending and investment in this budget are paid for,” Buttigieg said.
“We know that we need to make major investments in our roads and bridges and our education, in our health,” he added. “We can’t afford not to do these things because for decades, frankly, we’ve been disinvesting, we’ve been cutting in the things that make America strong.”
Bream also pressed the Transportation secretary on the various items that have been included in the president’s infrastructure plan, such as health care, elder care and home repair. The Fox News host acknowledged these areas as “laudable goals,” but argued they fell outside the realm of infrastructure.
“Okay, if you have a different category you’d like to put it in, that’s fine, we should still do it and we should do it as part of the American Jobs Plan,” Buttigieg responded. “We think of it as infrastructure because infrastructure is the foundation that lets people participate in the economy.”
President Biden on Friday released a proposed budget that could push the national debt into new record highs, with $2.3 trillion budgeted for his American Jobs Plan.
Buttigieg pointed to proposed tax hikes on corporations in defending the proposed plan, saying they would pay for proposed budget.
“Let’s make sure that corporations and the wealthy are paying their fair share, and we believe that’s going to raise the kind of revenue that we need in order to fund the proposals that the President’s put forward,” Buttigieg said. “Again, you look at something like the American Jobs Plan, the infrastructure vision that the President put out, the entire thing is paid for across 15 years. By year 16, deficits going down and he does it without asking one penny from the middle class.”
During a separate interview on CNN’s “State of the Union,” Buttigieg said that thinks the Biden administration is “getting pretty close to a fish or cut bait moment” on bipartisan infrastructure negotiations.
“This can’t go on in terms of the condition of our infrastructure, therefore, the negotiations can’t go on forever either,” he added.
Buttigieg also told host Martha Raddatz on ABC’s “This Week” that “there’s movement in the right direction” on infrastructure, adding that there are “concerns about things that are not” in the GOP’s latest counteroffer.
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