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Fri Aug 5, 2022, 09:43 AM

Sanders grapples with missed opportunity in Democrats' economic plan



(snip)

More than a year later, though, the sprawling package Sanders once envisioned is far smaller in size and scope. And as Democrats prepare to hold a key early vote on the bill, the senator himself has changed his tone — from a proud architect into a potent mix of supporter and critic.

“You can do something significant with 50 votes,” Sanders said in an interview Thursday, referring to the special legislative process Democrats plan to use to move the bill over Republican opposition. “Does this bill do that? No. Might it be better than nothing? Yes.”

For Sanders, the new health-care, climate and tax package that the Senate aims to adopt as soon as this weekend amounts to a massive missed opportunity. While the firebrand independent is supportive of its core aims — and is seen as likely to vote for its provisions to lower drug costs and address a fast-warming planet — he has increasingly made clear that the bill stops far short of what Democrats should have pursued while in rare control of the House, Senate and White House.

Twice in recent days, Sanders has taken to the Senate floor to sound off about the bill, at one point deriding its name as “the so-called Inflation Reduction Act.” He has promised to take one last run at expanding its reach, putting forward amendments during debate that could spend billions more on health care and climate.

(snip)

https://www.washingtonpost.com/us-policy/2022/08/05/bernie-sanders-manchin-schumer/



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Reply Sanders grapples with missed opportunity in Democrats' economic plan (Original post)
Uncle Joe Aug 5 OP
Phoenix61 Aug 5 #1
Uncle Joe Aug 5 #2
Phoenix61 Aug 5 #3
Uncle Joe Aug 5 #4
lapucelle Aug 5 #9
Uncle Joe Aug 5 #10
lapucelle Aug 5 #12
Uncle Joe Aug 5 #14
lapucelle Aug 5 #15
Uncle Joe Aug 5 #18
lapucelle Aug 5 #22
Uncle Joe Aug 5 #23
lapucelle Aug 5 #25
TexasTowelie Aug 5 #6
Uncle Joe Aug 5 #7
TexasTowelie Aug 5 #8
Me. Aug 5 #16
LetMyPeopleVote Saturday #29
sheshe2 Aug 5 #28
Me. Saturday #30
sheshe2 Saturday #31
867-5309. Aug 5 #5
lapucelle Aug 5 #11
Uncle Joe Aug 5 #13
lapucelle Aug 5 #17
Uncle Joe Aug 5 #21
lapucelle Aug 5 #24
Uncle Joe Aug 5 #26
lapucelle Aug 5 #27
Me. Aug 5 #20
Hortensis Sunday #32
Me. Sunday #33
onecaliberal Aug 5 #19
Hortensis Sunday #34
mcar Sunday #35
LetMyPeopleVote Sunday #36
sheshe2 Sunday #39
betsuni Sunday #40
LetMyPeopleVote Sunday #37
Hortensis Sunday #38

Response to Uncle Joe (Original post)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 10:05 AM

1. He's consistent if nothing else.

Nice that he’s including Manchin and Sinema in those 50 votes. If he had a way to get a yes vote out of them he should have spoken up a year ago.

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Response to Phoenix61 (Reply #1)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 10:09 AM

2. Bernie has more leverage now.

Manchin and Sinema want their stuff.

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Response to Uncle Joe (Reply #2)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 10:13 AM

3. Manchinwants his pipeline but I don't think Sinema

is that invested in what she asked for. She just wanted to grandstand, as usual.

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Response to Phoenix61 (Reply #3)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 10:14 AM

4. No,

Sinema wanted to maintain tax breaks for hedge fund managers and such on Wall Street.

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Response to Uncle Joe (Reply #4)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 11:29 AM

9. Is that entirely accurate?

Sen. Kyrsten Sinema signs off on Democrats’ big agenda bill, paving the way for Senate passage

Sinema said her support came after Democratic leaders agreed to remove a provision on closing the so-called carried interest tax loophole that enables wealthy hedge fund and investment managers to pay lower taxes.

“We have agreed to remove the carried interest tax provision, protect advanced manufacturing, and boost our clean energy economy in the Senate’s budget reconciliation legislation," she said in a statement Thursday. "Subject to the Parliamentarian’s review, I’ll move forward."

snip===========================================================

A Democrat familiar with the new agreement said it will contain “a new excise tax on stock buybacks that brings in far more revenue than the carried interest provision did.” A second Democratic source confirmed the new tax on stock buybacks.

It was not immediately clear what other changes Sinema secured to support the legislation. Schumer said Thursday that it keeps "the major components" of the original bill, "including reducing prescription drug costs, fighting climate change, closing tax loopholes exploited by big corporations and the wealthy, and reducing the deficit by $300 billion."

Sinema had long been opposed to a provision in the deal Manchin cut with Schumer that sought to close the carried interest tax break. A person close to Sinema said Thursday that her needs on the bill "have been met."

In her statement, Sinema said she'd work separately "to enact carried interest tax reforms, protecting investments in America’s economy and encouraging continued growth while closing the most egregious loopholes that some abuse to avoid paying taxes.”

https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/congress/sen-kyrsten-sinema-signs-democrats-big-agenda-bill-paving-way-senate-p-rcna41675



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Response to lapucelle (Reply #9)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 11:45 AM

10. It's accurate in the primary point being that hedge fund managers

will be the primary beneficiaries from the failure to enact carried interest tax reforms.

As for stock buybacks raising more funds, I believe that only occurs if they buy their stock back, carried interest reform would be a minute amount on virtually every transaction.

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Response to Uncle Joe (Reply #10)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 11:49 AM

12. So it's not entirely accurate?

Sinema wanted to maintain tax breaks for hedge fund managers and such on Wall Street.

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Response to lapucelle (Reply #12)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 11:51 AM

14. Logical conclusion, those are the primary beneficiaries which you don't dispute.

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Response to Uncle Joe (Reply #14)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 11:59 AM

15. How is that a logical conclusion?

A Democrat familiar with the new agreement said it will contain “a new excise tax on stock buybacks that brings in far more revenue than the carried interest provision did.” A second Democratic source confirmed the new tax on stock buybacks.

snip==========================================================

In her statement, Sinema said she'd work separately "to enact carried interest tax reforms, protecting investments in America’s economy and encouraging continued growth while closing the most egregious loopholes that some abuse to avoid paying taxes.”

https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/congress/sen-kyrsten-sinema-signs-democrats-big-agenda-bill-paving-way-senate-p-rcna41675

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Response to lapucelle (Reply #15)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 12:04 PM

18. Buybacks are not mandatory and thus not universal, taxes on micro-transactions pretty much are.

A company or individual doesn't have to buy a stock back.

Hedge fund managers and billionaires would just change their strategy to avoid paying that tax, so one can't accurately count on past performance in regards to how much money can be raised off stock buybacks.

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Response to Uncle Joe (Reply #18)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 12:11 PM

22. Yes...and? How does that support the claim?

A Democrat familiar with the new agreement said it will contain “a new excise tax on stock buybacks that brings in far more revenue than the carried interest provision did.” A second Democratic source confirmed the new tax on stock buybacks.

snip===================================================

In her statement, Sinema said she'd work separately "to enact carried interest tax reforms, protecting investments in America’s economy and encouraging continued growth while closing the most egregious loopholes that some abuse to avoid paying taxes.”


It seems to me that at this point badmouthing this bill serves to depress Democratic voters. If we hold or grow or majority, there will be Democratically controlled reconciliation bills in the 118th Congress which is less than five months away.

Who benefits by talking down this bill?

Cui bono?

Not Democrats.



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Response to lapucelle (Reply #22)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 12:15 PM

23. That has been the case for over a year with Build Back Better,

this is a natural part of the debate and negotiations.

Democracy and deliberations on behalf of the American People.

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Response to Uncle Joe (Reply #23)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 12:30 PM

25. It may have been claimed for over a year, but it's obviously not the case,

given the bill that the Senate will be voting on shortly.

It may have been claimed that Democratic senators are crooked or corrupt and that the Inflation Reduction Act will not reduce inflation, but the facts before us have given lie to those claims.



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Response to Uncle Joe (Reply #2)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 10:38 AM

6. If that were true, why wasn't he involved in the discussions between Schumer and Manchin?

Has there ever been any other time when the chair of the Senate Budget Committee was not part of the negotiations on a budget bill?

Bernie will get to see the bill through the Budget Committee and offer amendments. However, if he makes too many tweaks then he risks losing Manchin and Sinema in the process and killing the bill. Thus nothing has changed, Bernie doesn't have any more leverage now than he did previously.

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Response to TexasTowelie (Reply #6)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 10:52 AM

7. Why did Manchin and Sinema tank the Build Back Better Bill?

How many is too many amendments?

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Response to Uncle Joe (Reply #7)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 11:27 AM

8. I asked first, but I'll answer you anyway even though you ignored my questions.

Manchin and Sinema tanked the Build Back Better Bill because they didn't like provisions within the bill. You can contact them to get their reasons because I don't speak for either of them. The matter was decided earlier in the year and I don't see any reason to rehash those discussions other than it provides the opportunity to bash both senators which I will not do.

The question isn't necessarily how many amendments, but the price tag associated with those amendments. Could a $50 billion project be included with an amendment and still keep the bill alive? Probably. Could a $500 billion project be added? Not likely and still retain the support of Manchin and Sinema.

From my vantage point, it looks like Schumer and Manchin did the end round of Bernie by excluding him in the negotiations for the bill. While Bernie will receive some attention as budget committee chairman, his ability to negotiate any big ticket items are constrained by the agreements of Schumer, Manchin, and Sinema. Despite Bernie's misgivings about the bill, he really only has two choices---either go along and get the bill passed or load the bill with so much spending that it kills the bill. I hope that it isn't the latter because while the bill isn't perfect it is what can be accomplished in the current political situation.

Now how about some replies to my questions?

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Response to TexasTowelie (Reply #6)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 12:03 PM

16. "Bernie doesn't have any more leverage now than he did previously."

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Response to Me. (Reply #16)

Sat Aug 6, 2022, 02:12 AM

29. You are correct

Sanders was NOT part of this process

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Response to TexasTowelie (Reply #6)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 05:43 PM

28. He seems shocked about this bill.

How can a committee chairperson NOT know what his committee is doing?

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Response to sheshe2 (Reply #28)

Sat Aug 6, 2022, 11:22 AM

30. Telling Isn't It...In So Many Ways

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Response to Me. (Reply #30)

Sat Aug 6, 2022, 12:22 PM

31. Yes, it sure is.

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Response to Uncle Joe (Original post)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 10:37 AM

5. Bernie's vote is taken for granted

and probably with good reason. As long as he doesn't leverage it, the speeches won't mean much.

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Response to 867-5309. (Reply #5)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 11:47 AM

11. The story the OP links to says that Sanders is a "we'ii see" on the bill.

Asked if he would cast his vote for the bill, Sanders replied, “I’m taking a hard look,” adding: “We’re going to have to see.”

https://www.washingtonpost.com/us-policy/2022/08/05/bernie-sanders-manchin-schumer/

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Response to lapucelle (Reply #11)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 11:50 AM

13. The video in the OP offers even more substance in regards to Bernie's position on the issue. n/t

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Response to Uncle Joe (Reply #13)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 12:04 PM

17. Thanks, but I've heard the stump speech.

By the way, why did the senator begin by calling the bill "the so-called Inflation Reduction Act"?



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Response to lapucelle (Reply #17)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 12:06 PM

21. Yes and accurately so. n/t

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Response to Uncle Joe (Reply #21)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 12:24 PM

24. Senate leadership was prepared to counter false claims about the bill.

Support for the Inflation Reduction Act and Other Materials

- Quotes from experts who agree the Inflation Reduction Act will reduce inflation

- Statement from Former Treasury Secretaries Hank Paulson (under Republican President George W. Bush), Larry Summers, Jack Lew, and Timothy Geither in support of the Inflation Reduction Act

- Letter from 126 economists to Congressional leadership in support of the Inflation Reduction Act

- Bipartisan Group of Former IRS Commissioners Call for Passage of Inflation Reduction Act, Debunk Lies About Increased Taxes

- Enforcement Affecting Anyone but Rich Tax Cheats

- Moody’s Analytics – Assessing the Macroeconomic Consequences of the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022

- Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget Analysis on Inflation Reduction Act

- Statement of Support from BlueGreen Alliance

- United Mine Workers of America Applauds Inflation Reduction Act

- Machinists Union Pledges Support for Inflation Reduction Act

- Statement of Support from Center on Budget and Policy Priorities

- The nonpartisan Peterson Foundation statement in support of the Inflation Reduction Act

- The National League of Cities statement in support of the Inflation Reduction Act

- Morning Consult + Politico Poll & Navigator Research Poll show overwhelming support for the provisions in the Inflation Reduction Act

- Video of Senator Mitch McConnell’s favorite economists endorsing the Inflation Reduction Act

- Video of Senator Mike Crapo admitting Inflation Reduction Act will NOT raise taxes for families earning under $400,000

https://www.democrats.senate.gov/inflation-reduction-act-of-2022

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Response to lapucelle (Reply #24)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 12:34 PM

26. Biden's Build Back Better Plan Will 'Ease' Inflation, 15 Nobel Prize Economists Say



(snip)

Democrats in Congress are attempting to push through a $3.5 trillion "human infrastructure" bill via the budget reconciliation process, but they are facing internal division with some moderates opposed to the high price tag. As some of these moderates raise concerns that the package could lead to greater inflation, Republican lawmakers are uniformly opposed to the Biden plan.

But 15 economists—all who have previously won the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences—have argued precisely the opposite.

"Because this agenda invests in long-term economic capacity and will enhance the ability of more Americans to participate productively in the economy, it will ease longer-term inflationary pressures," they wrote in an open letter dated Wednesday.

(snip)

The economists praised the American Rescue Plan passed by Biden and Democrats without any Republican support back in March. However, they said more spending is needed to reverse "years of disinvestment in public goods" and to address "the country's long-term needs—including building toward sustainable and inclusive growth and facilitating our clean energy transition."

(snip)

https://www.newsweek.com/bidens-build-back-better-plan-will-ease-inflation-15-nobel-prize-economists-say-1629921



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Response to Uncle Joe (Reply #26)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 12:49 PM

27. Those economists said that a year ago. The economic outlook and conditions are very different now.

Here's what economists are saying today about the Inflation Reduction Act:

First on CNN: Top economists say Democrats' health care and climate package will put 'downward pressure on inflation'

Congressional Democrats' climate and health care package is getting a boost from a group of top economists, who wrote in a new letter that the so-called Inflation Reduction Act will lower prices for American consumers amid high inflation.

"This historic legislation makes crucial investments in energy, health care, and in shoring up the nation's tax system. These investments will fight inflation and lower costs for American families while setting the stage for strong, stable, and broadly-shared long-term economic growth," 126 economists said in a letter sent to congressional leadership Tuesday, which was first obtained by CNN.

The letter was signed by key economists including former Clinton Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin and Obama Treasury Secretary Jack Lew, Obama Labor Department chief economist Betsey Stevenson, Moody's Analytics chief economist Mark Zandi, former Congressional Budget Office Director Doug Elmendorf, and Nobel prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz, among others.

https://www.cnn.com/2022/08/02/politics/economists-democrats-package-downward-pressure-inflation/index.html

The letter:
https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/22124998-letter-from-economists-to-congressional-leadership

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Response to lapucelle (Reply #11)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 12:05 PM

20. That Really Ticks Me Off

enough with the 'we'll see'. I know it's not a post office but nevertheless...

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Response to Me. (Reply #20)

Sun Aug 7, 2022, 11:43 AM

32. His "leverage" opportunity would be voting with the Repubs to kill.

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Response to Hortensis (Reply #32)

Sun Aug 7, 2022, 12:02 PM

33. Grrrrr

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Response to Uncle Joe (Original post)

Fri Aug 5, 2022, 12:05 PM

19. We're going to get this now and then after November, when we have more reps and Senator

We can really start to fix things.

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Response to Uncle Joe (Original post)

Sun Aug 7, 2022, 12:11 PM

34. To my mind his 30 years in DC appear as almost nothing but failed opportunities

to achieve what he wanted to. A few years ago Sanders told a newly elected congressman (according to the latter) that serving in congress was a complete waste of everyone's time, which I take to mean he shares my evaluation but applies it to everyone.

This isn't about ideology but about expectations based on past performance: Over 30 years he typically voted for Democratic legislation he usually criticized bitterly, but was unable to gain acceptance and support for ideas he considered much better and constantly advocated to everyone who'd listen.

My observation is that over that 30 years in DC Sanders has demonstrated one outstanding personal talent and one legislative ability: A talent for energizing political speaking, charismatic populist leader type, which we saw in 2016. And ability to rename post offices; if I recall, he has two such successes on his record.

So, based on performance it's not realistic to expect that he might belatedly "leverage" positive change to this bill. At this point the Repubs, and he, are offering amendments that are instead expected be rejected during the "votarama" period before passage. The usual purpose is to create soundbites for to promote selves in reelection campaigns and to attack opponents.

(Btw, anyone else remember that Sanders did not use his power as budget committee head to insist on a minimum wage increase to $12 from $7.25 (!), which both Manchin and Biden suggested they could support? Huge missed opportunity that did not transform the lives of the millions still living on $7.25.)

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Response to Hortensis (Reply #34)

Sun Aug 7, 2022, 01:39 PM

35. Well said

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Response to Hortensis (Reply #34)

Sun Aug 7, 2022, 02:42 PM

36. I agree with your analysls

I have never been impressed with Sanders and his legislative record is sad

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Response to Hortensis (Reply #34)

Sun Aug 7, 2022, 05:12 PM

39. Well said, Hortensis.

Thank you.

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Response to Hortensis (Reply #34)

Sun Aug 7, 2022, 06:16 PM

40. No no no. Fifteen bucks minimum wage is the magic number.

No other number is magic, unacceptable. Purity slogan.

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Response to Uncle Joe (Original post)

Sun Aug 7, 2022, 03:14 PM

37. The Inflation Reduction Act has passed in the Senate

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Response to LetMyPeopleVote (Reply #37)

Sun Aug 7, 2022, 05:07 PM

38. Great! Now, on to passage by house Democrats next Friday.

This shows the power of ANY degree of majority, just as blockage of the entire BBB by the Repubs + a couple of conservative Democrats demonstrated the need for larger majorities.

From our GA senator Rev. Warnock:






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