Biden to seek record $6 trillion for 2022 federal budget: NYT

US President Joe Biden’s budget proposal brings the federal fiscal footprint to levels unseen since World War II as he seeks to fund his infrastructure plans and expand social safety nets, The New York Times reports.

United States President Joe Biden on Friday will release his first full budget plan since taking office in January and is expected to lay out funding for social programmes, foreign aid, immigration, policing and national defence [File: Kevin Lamarque/Reuters]

United States President Joe Biden will seek $6 trillion in federal spending for the 2022 fiscal year, taking the nation to its highest sustained levels of federal spending since World War II, The New York Times reported on Thursday.

Documents obtained by the newspaper show the Democratic president’s first budget request calls for federal government spending to rise to $8.2 trillion by 2031.

The deficit will run above $1.3 trillion throughout the next decade, first hitting $1.8 trillion in 2022 before tapering off, according to The New York Times.

If the budget gets approved, the total debt held by the American people would more than exceed the annual value of economic output, rising to 117 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) in 2031.

Biden plans to pay for the boost in spending through increased taxes on corporations and high earners.

If Biden’s budget goes according to plan, the US government would spend nearly a quarter of the nation’s GDP every year over the next decade. It would also collect tax revenue equal to just under one-fifth of the total economy.

The Democratic president ran a campaign against former President Donald Trump that pledged to level the economic playing field and give all Americans a fair shot at the middle class.

Biden also pledges to make US industry competitive in a world his administration argues is moving towards reducing energy emissions and combatting climate change.

The president has pitched exactly that in his two-part agenda contained in the American Jobs Plan and the American Families Plan, which aim to update the country’s infrastructure and expand social safety nets.

This includes funding for roads, water pipes, broadband internet, electric vehicle charging stations and advanced manufacturing research. The American Families Plan envisions funding for affordable childcare, universal prekindergarten, and a national paid leave programme.

Biden is set to release his first full budget since taking office in January on Friday, when he is expected to announce possible spending surges in Medicaid and other social programmes and lay out funding for foreign aid, immigration, policing and national defence.

Republicans have criticised the Democratic president for seeking trillions for a spending spree.

They have also pushed back on his infrastructure spending proposals. Senate Republicans on Thursday presented a new counteroffer of $928bn over the next eight years to Biden’s $1.7 trillion plan.

The president proposes the annual budget for the federal government but relies on Congress to approve it. The odds are in Biden’s favour.

Democrats hold the majority in the US House of Representatives and they also narrowly control the US Senate, which is divided 50-50 with Democratic Vice President Kamala Harris holding the tie-breaking vote.

Source: Al Jazeera