Capito blasts Biden's budget proposal
Mar. 17—Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., blasted Pres. Joe Biden's $6.8 trillion budget proposal Thursday, calling his spending excessive and a matter of "misplaced priorities."
Capito said during a virtual press conference from her Washington office that the proposed budget will be "dead on arrival" because it is "more and more spending" at a time when the national debt continues to grow and inflation remains a serious problem, especially with food, shelter and gasoline, which is once again creeping up in price.
"This is really, really hurting people," she said, adding that any raises people get are "wiped out" by inflation and more spending contributes to inflation.
Capito said the budget also includes less money for the Department of Homeland Security, which is in charge of trying to stop the flow of illegal immigrants, as well as fentanyl, across the southern border.
"I just think these are misplaced priorities," she said, adding that Biden's budget proposal mentions climate change 42 times and fentanyl only twice as the fentanyl epidemic continues, a crisis that is "wrecking families and killing the American public."
Capito also said Biden is proposing an "enormous tax increase" that will hit small businesses.
Although Biden says those making less than $400,000 a year will not see a tax hike, she said small businesses will be hit and that means everyone will be hurt.
"There are no spending cuts, just more and more spending," she said.
Capito wants to see a bipartisan approach to balance spending and cuts in the budget to help tackle the national debt, which has surpassed $31 trillion and continues to grow.
According to the Tax Foundation, the proposed budget for fiscal year 2024 would add up to almost $4.7 trillion in new taxes targeted at businesses and high-income individuals.
"The major changes include higher marginal tax rates on corporate, individual, and capital gains income; a complicated new minimum tax on high-net-worth individuals; and increases to Medicare taxes. The negative effects of higher tax rates on saving, investment, and entrepreneurship would have economy-wide repercussions, ultimately harming workers, international competitiveness, and domestic investment."
"This misguided proposal would saddle American families with more taxes, more waste, more debt, and more government intrusion that our constituents just do not deserve." Capito said on the Senate floor Wednesday. "We're looking at taxes on small businesses, capital gains taxes, corporate tax rate goes up, taxes on American energy, retirement taxes go up, the Medicare tax would increase, and the personal income tax would go up to the highest level in decades. What President Biden fails to realize is, the brunt of his tax hikes would be felt by those who own, invest in, or operate small and medium businesses."
A bipartisan approach to Social Security and Medicare is also needed, she said Thursday.
A lot of solutions to sustaining both programs are being discussed, she said, including raising the retirement age at some point, removing the income cap on the Social Security tax deduction limit (in 2023, that limit is earnings of $160,200) and restructuring Medicare.
"We have nipped around the edges (of these issues)," she said, but the major problems with sustainability have not been addressed.
"We are going to have to come to a bipartisan solution," she said, adding that politics must be left out of that process or nothing will be accomplished.
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