President Biden and Speaker Nancy Pelosi attempt a last-ditch effort to rally Democrats to fully support the $3.5T spending bill.
How does Congress cut a $3.5 trillion spending bill down to $1.5 trillion? By using gimmicks to hide its true cost.
That is the approach that congressional Democrats are brazenly employing to make their spending bonanza appear smaller than it is. Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.) openly discussed their use of budget gimmicks over the weekend when she told CNN that “our idea now is to look at how you make them funded for a little bit of a shorter time.”
Progressives have been abusing these gimmicks from the start. They began with a reconciliation proposal that would cost nearly $5 trillion over the decade. Then, in order to cut the bill’s “official” cost closer to $4 trillion, the bill’s authors included a December 2025 expiration of the $130 billion annual expansion of the child tax credit to $3,000 per child (or $3,600 for children under the age of 6). This made the 10-year cost of the proposal appear $750 billion smaller.
Kent Nishimura / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images