WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, the White House unveiled the American Families Plan. Robert Weissman, president of Public Citizen, released the following statement:
“The American Families Plan includes an array of far-reaching measures that will reduce poverty, mitigate racial, gender and wealth inequality, increase opportunity and make America a more decent place. Among other crucial provisions, reducing the economic burden of childcare, making pre-K education universal and adopting paid family leave will make a huge difference in the lives of Americans and make our country better.
“The tax provisions of the plan will also reduce inequality and make the nation fairer and stronger. It is just common sense for the U.S. to reinvest in resource-starved IRS and to crack down on tax evasion by the rich. Not only will investments in increased enforcement have a strong multiplier effect, but it will also help restore the public’s trust to know that everyone is paying what they owe. And it is far past time for the wealthy to pay a fairer share. By increasing the top tax rate for the wealthiest earners and equalizing the capital gains rate for millionaires while addressing ‘stepped-up basis,’ it will inject a much-needed dose of fairness into the code.
“As Congress moves to turn the American Families Plan into legislation and make it law, it must make sure to include in the implementing legislation the president’s plan to authorize Medicare prescription drug negotiation (with CBO-estimated savings of $450 billion), to expand Medicare coverage and to lower the Medicare eligibility age. Far too many Americans continue to struggle to afford needed medication and tens of millions continue to go without health care because they are either uninsured or cannot afford to use the insurance they have. By including Medicare drug price negotiation in the American Families Plan and reinvesting significant savings from negotiations into the Medicare program, including improving dental, vision and hearing services, capping out-of-pocket costs and lowering the Medicare eligibility age, the Biden administration and Congress would be delivering on key promises and improving the lives of millions. Drug pricing and addressing health care are Americans’ top priorities other than COVID-19, and it is imperative that the implemented American Families Plan deliver relief in these areas.
“This is the time to act boldly and decisively to deliver the relief the American people need.”