October 3, 2022

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USA: Senate green light for climate and tax plan – Chronicle

The biggest investment in fighting climate change in American history: After a year of negotiations, Joe Biden, Democrats won and the Senate approved — by a decisive vote for Vice President Kamala Harris — the $740 billion maximum plan on climate and taxes. and health. The Inflation Reduction Act passed by 51 votes to 50 against, and now goes to the House of Representatives where it should pass without problems. Although well short of the $3.5 trillion Biden initially proposed, the measure represents a victory for Democrats three months before the November midterm elections. And Biden’s victory, capping a week of successes, from the raid that killed the al-Qaeda leader to his recovery from Covid. At the end of 18 days in solitary confinement, Biden is in fact passive and can resume his normal public obligations, including travel.

After collecting the crucial votes of Senators Joe Manchin and Kirsten Senema, Senate Democrats introduced the Inflation Reduction Act in the courtroom and were able, thanks to Harris’ vote, to begin debate on the ruling. At the end of the all-night marathon between Saturday and Sunday, the final green light has arrived for the historic measure, which includes allocating about $370 billion to combat climate change and another barrage of cost-cutting funds. of medicines. The planned expenditures will be funded with a minimum tax of 15% on companies with annual profits exceeding $1 billion, and a 1% tax on companies that buy back their stock, while strengthening the Internal Revenue Service, the US revenue agency. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said the measure would “help every citizen of this country and make America a better place.”

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Solidarity Republicans rejected the initiative, calling it harmful to Americans because they believed it was putting the economy at risk, already on the brink of recession. They argue that the effect of new corporate taxes will negatively affect job creation and raise prices further. Conservatives have tried to the last to stop it and slow its approval thanks to the “vote in rama” procedure, which allows senators to propose an unlimited number of amendments to vote on, in quick succession, at the end of a short debate. However, Biden does not accept criticism of a package of measures that are already significantly reduced compared to his initial proposal to obtain the decisive votes for Mansion and Cinema, who for months held him hostage in the Senate because of their opposition. The president is in fact convinced that the measure is fully in line with his goal of developing the economy “from the bottom up”. Biden also needs it in light of the November midterm elections, in which he is facing difficulties as 69% of Americans are convinced the economy is deteriorating and 62% reject his economic work. And with the specter of Donald Trump who may announce his candidacy for 2024 before the vote.

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