January 9, 2022 - Douglas Myser

Senator key to Biden's agenda. The success or failure of President BIden's legislative agenda may very well depend upon one U.S. Senator. No its not Joe Manchin, its Mitt Romney of Utah. The Utah Senator introduced a bill last February that would take a key component of the social policy of President Biden, the child tax credit, and make it permanent. The Presidnet would be wise to take Senator Romney up on his earlier proposal, as it would guarantee that akey component of the Biden, Build Back Better plan would succeed. Senator key to BIden's agenda.

Since the beginning of the year, it has been abundantly clear that Sen. Joe Manchin was one of the key votes, if not he key vote, for getting Build Back Better passed. Yet the bill is at odds with his stated legislative goals, but also his fundamental philosophy. Manchin wants a strealined bill focused on giving a hand up to the most vulnerable, without discouraging work, driving up inflation or adding to the national debt. Build Back Better is packed full of gimmicks to win validation from the Congressional Budget Office, devotes hundreds of billions to reinstating tax loopholes for upper income Americans, and provides no permanent funding for its hodgepodge of programs nominally designed to help the poor but structured to serve long term Democratic constituencies.

There is a bill that fits Manchin's requirements. It also expands and permanently funds the primary source of poverty reduction in Build Back Better. ROmney's Family Security Act, in a rare feat in today's hyperpartisan environment, has won accolades from across the political spectrum. In addition to tying benefits through the Social Security Administration, instead of the IRS, the plan supports both one income families with a dedicated stay at home parent and families on the margins of the economy, striving to make ends meet. Its one way to get the logjam over with and get Congress moving again.