The Senate Republicans stand directly behind Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) trying to kill the Democrats’ new legislation. But the vote was equally divided along party lines 50-50. And fortunately, Vice President Kamala Harris broke the tie with her Democratic vote. Then the President’s Inflation Reduction Act went to the Senate floor next, CNN reported.
The Senate will pass the ground-breaking bill after staying up all night and into the early Sunday morning waiting until the GOP stops throwing amendments at it, which is called Vote-a-Rama. Then Vice President Kamala Harris’ is holding herself available with her tie-breaking vote, which will mean a win for Democrats, according to The Washington Post:
The Act includes lowering prescription drug prices until the GOP bullied it out, climate change measures, and more taxes for the rich. Imagine if the Dems could put a lid on outrageous insulin costs at $35 per month.
The vote is so close that every Democrat must sign onto it. Two senators have blocked the Inflation Reduction in its previous iterations, Senators Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ). Changes were made to the bill prior to them coming onboard. Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-NY) continued:
‘I’m not voting for amendments. I’m trying to keep this bill clean and get it out of here. It’s too important.’
He stood on the floor calling this the Inflation Reduction Act “historic,” The Washington Post reported:
‘The time has come for the Senate to begin debate on this historic piece of legislation. The Inflation Reduction Act is a groundbreaking bill for the American people, for families struggling to pay the bills, for seniors struggling to pay for medication, for kids struggling with asthma.’
And he could not resist saying:
‘This is one of the most comprehensive and impactful bills Congress has seen in decades.’
So what does the Inflation Reduction Act do exactly? It:
- ‘[P]rovides money for consumer home energy rebates, grants to make affordable housing more energy efficient and tax credits to accelerate domestic manufacturing of solar panels, wind turbines, and batteries.
- [P]rovides generous tax credits to buy new and used electric vehicles, though critics of the bill say those credits couldn’t be used immediately as they don’t apply to vehicles with batteries produced in China or dependent on Chinese minerals.
- [E]xtends expiring health insurance premium subsidies under the Affordable Care Act another three years at a cost of $64 billion.
[R]aises approximately $740 billion in revenue by implementing a 15 percent corporate minimum tax, empowering Medicare to negotiate lower prescription drug prices and imposing a one percent excise tax on stock buybacks.’
Ever sensitive to the politics of the day, Schumer and Senator Manchin authored the bill. They say it cuts the deficit a whopping $300 billion over the next 10 years:
- ‘The corporate minimum tax will raise $258 billion in revenue but exempt full expensing deductions for businesses.
- Medicare can negotiate lower drug prices and save the government $288 billion over 10 years. The excise tax on stock buybacks will raise $74 billion.
- Another $124 billion in revenue will come from improving operations at the IRS and beefing up enforcement of tax compliance.
- It would spend $369 billion on energy security and climate change programs estimated to reduce U.S. global warming emissions by 40 percent by 2030.’
At long last, VP Harris is finally able to come through with significant legislation to help Democrats in their Midterm Elections.
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