In his first address before a joint session of Congress Wednesday night, US President Joe Biden highlighted how his sweeping infrastructure plan will help Americans recover from the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic and complete globally.
He even declared “America is rising anew.”
One half of the sweeping plan, the American Families Plan, includes nearly $2 trillion in federal funding for things like universal pre-kindergarten, two years of tuition-free community college, an expanded family and medical leave program and monthly payments of at least $250 to low-income parents.
“Twelve years is no longer enough today to compete with the rest of the world in the 21st century,” Biden said of the amount of free education provided by the federal government. “That’s why my American Families Plan guarantees four additional years of public education for every person in America, starting as early as we can.”
Biden said the plan will also provide access to “quality affordable child care,” guaranteeing that low- and middle-income families won’t pay more than 7 percent of their income for high-quality care for children up to the age of 5 as well as providing up to 12 weeks of paid leave and family medical leave.
“No one should have to choose between a job and a paycheck or taking care of themselves and their loved ones or parent or spouse or child,” he said.
The families plan would be funded largely by a tax increase for the nation’s most wealthy over 15 years. The White House unveiled details of the plan early Wednesday.
“I will not impose any tax increase on people making less than $400,000 but it’s time for corporate America and the wealthiest 1 percent of Americans to begin to pay their fair share. Just their fair share,” Biden said Wednesday.
Biden also outlined the other half of his major infrastructure proposal, the American Jobs Plan, which will place a focus on modernizing transportation infrastructure including roads, bridges and airports.
On Wednesday, the president pledged that the plan would provide relief to Americans who have found themselves out of work as a result of the pandemic.
“The American Jobs Plan will help millions of Americans get back to their jobs and back to their careers,” he said. “Two million women have dropped out of the workforce during this pandemic. Two million. And too often because they couldn’t get the care they needed to care for their child or care for an elderly parent who needs help.”
He also said the investments in the plan “will be guided by one principle, ‘buy American, buy American.'” SOVEREIGNPH