There are more signs that the U.S. economy is roaring back to life, and President Biden is proposing trillions of dollars in new government spending. CBS News senior business analyst Jill Schlesinger joins "CBS This Morning: Saturday" to discuss the economy and the president's plan.
- This week there were more signs that the US economy is roaring back to life. And they come as President Biden is proposing trillions of in new government spending. For more on the economy and the president's latest plan, we are joined by CBS News Senior Business Analyst Jill Schlesinger. Jill, good morning.
And let's start with the latest. It's the third big near $2 trillion spending plan that the president has proposed. What were your key takeaways, and what are some of the details you can share with us?
JILL SCHLESINGER: Well, I think what's interesting is that the Biden plans taken together, they're like the trilogy, right? We had the American Jobs Plan, the American Rescue Plan, and now we have the American Families Plan. And the major theme of all of them is a central one that's really different. It is that government is important in helping American families and the American economy.
And I think what's really important about this as we look at this, these three plans together, they really are relying on corporations and wealthy Americans to foot the bill to make this big change in the role of government.
- Jill, tell us more about that. Because we know that the Republican opposition to this is that it's too expensive. And that these projects are, you know, all part of a Democratic wish list. But is the bottom line that this administration wants to close loopholes and tax the rich?
JILL SCHLESINGER: Well, I think that there's a combination of factors here. You know, you look at this recent $1.8 trillion. It's a trillion dollars of spending over 10 years. It's $800 billion of making tax credits permanent.
And the way that this is happening is primarily by raising taxes for the wealthiest Americans. The administration says it's for the top 1%. And the four aspects of that plan would be to actually raise the top right to 39.6%. That's where it was before the Trump tax cuts of 2017.
It's raising the top capital gains tax rates for those people who make more than a million dollars. It's changing the way estate taxes are levied on people who pass assets down through a generation. And it's-- the fourth poll is really interesting. It's injecting $80 billion into the IRS to help the IRS conduct audits of these high earners.
Again, this is very much focused on high earners, and the previous plan was focused on the corporations. So put that together, that's a lot of taxing for the wealthiest, as well as corporations to foot the bill of this real shift away from no government into more government.
- Jill, we talked about coronavirus recovery. Health-wise, some more than 100 million Americans vaccinated now, we just mentioned. When it comes to financial recovery from the coronavirus, where are we right now?
JILL SCHLESINGER: I think that it's really good news. This week, we found out that in the first quarter of this year, the economy expanded at a 6.4% annualized rate. That is huge. It is really an improvement. Where we were, just think about it, over a year ago where the economy was contracting so dramatically.
And when you look at this economic performance in the first quarter, it's likely to continue. Economists tell me that the US could actually expand at a 6% to 7% growth rate for the entire year. That would be the quickest expansion since the mid 1980s.
So we are well on our way to recovery. Of course, we need to get more people back to work. But man, this turnaround is unexpected when you look back just a year ago.
- OK, Jill Schlesinger, as always, thanks very much.