Not Big Enough: Progressives Issue ‘Wish List’ For Biden’s $2 Trillion Infrastructure Bill

progressives biden infrastructure

The 95-member Congressional Progressive Caucus (CPC), the far-left caucus of the Democrat Party, doesn’t think Joe Biden’s $2 trillion dollar infrastructure plan goes nearly far enough, issuing top items on their wish list of items to be funded. 

Biden’s plan is reportedly a two-parter. The first part, addressing actual physical infrastructure, like the nation’s highways, roads, and bridges. The second part will address non-infrastructure issues like child care and education.

The CPC is not being shy about expressing what they want the bill to include.

Caucus Chair Pramila Jayapal (D-WA) told Politico, “We agree that it’s time for transformative change and we look forward to working with the Biden administration to expand on their proposal and ensure that the American Jobs Plan goes big to truly meet the needs of the public.”

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The Extra Goodies Progressives Want

The first part of Biden’s plan looks like an infrastructure bill. Of $621 billion going to transportation, $115 will go to highways and roads, $20 billion for road safety, and $85 billion for mass transit systems. So far so good.

It is the second part of the plan, the non-infrastructure part, that Progressives have set their sights on.

Their priorities list includes universal childcare and eliminating any work requirements, and permanent paid family and medical leave.

Joe Biden’s plan calls for $213 billion in “affordable and sustainable housing.” This would build and retrofit more than 2 million homes, rehabilitate more than 500,000 homes, and provide $40 billion to improve public housing.

The Progressive idea would be $70 billion to address the public housing repair backlog, $45 billion for the National Housing Trust Fund per year, which $26 billion for housing for the homeless.

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A few additions on their list could take health care from “Obamacare” to “Bidencare.”

What is being labeled as “dramatically lower drug prices” is based on H.R. 3, a bill that would have allowed the U.S. Health Department to directly negotiate drug prices. The bill died in the Senate.

The CPC says everyone, insured and uninsured, should benefit not just from lower negotiated drug prices but also inflationary caps on drug prices.

The CPC claims that any savings made from the above should be used to pay for lowering the age of Medicare eligibility and expand to include dental, vision, and hearing.

And in what may the latest in the ongoing effort to legalize millions of migrants coming into the U.S., Progressives would like to see a a roadmap to citizenship for essential workers, TPS recipients, and Dreamers. 

In fact, in the document put out by the Congressional Progressive Caucus, they make sure to note that this is “a key priority” for not only the CPC, but the Hispanic Caucus, and the Asian and Pacific American Caucus.

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What Is Infrastructure?

There is some argument as to what can be defined as “infrastructure,” and the Democrats are stretching the definition of the word in a big way.

Politico reports that the argument is that $400 billion to expand home care is not infrastructure and just another progressive sneak attack. The Politico report continues, “Certainly a laudable goal, but it’s silly to call it infrastructure and no previous politician who put forward a similar caregiving proposal has done so under the guise of infrastructure spending.”

New York Senator Kirsten Gilibrand recently gave her own unique argument for what infrastructure is. 

When Democrats are in control, infrastructure can be what ever you want. You can read the full wish list, provided by Politico, here.


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