The legislation, among the most expensive in years, is remarkable for its reach. It rewrites tax, health care, environment, education, housing and other policies, shoring up low- and middle-income families, helping the elderly and combating climate change.
Most of it would be paid for with tax boosts on the country’s highest earners, biggest corporations and companies doing business abroad. That includes new surtaxes on people earning over $10 million annually and a corporate minimum tax.
Because of its size, scope and status as a symbol of what Democrats stand for, each party thinks the package will help in next year’s midterm elections, when Republicans have a solid chance at capturing House and Senate control.
“Hey, hey, goodbye,” GOP lawmakers sang, taunting Democrats during the vote. Republicans call the measure a waste of money that will worsen budget deficits, overheat an inflation-battered economy and show voters that Democrats can’t resist ever-larger government.
Democrats see the 2,100-page legislation as overdue and long-lasting help for a vast swath of the nation.
The bill “will be the pillar of health and financial security in America,” said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif. “If you are a parent, a senior, a child, a worker, if you are an American, this bill is for you.”