At $1.5 trillion, I think my priorities would probably be:

$460B for health care — making the ACA subsidy expansion permanent and fixing the hole in the Medicaid expansion.

$500B for paid leave (Yes, it would really cost about that much)

$540B for climate
I know, abandoning the CTC sucks. But we're the only developed country w/o paid leave, only about 1 in 5 people get it through work currently (roughly 1 in 3 live in states w/ programs), and it'd be permanent.
OK! Adjustments. First, it's been pointed out that the $163B estimate on ACA subsidies, which came from Biden, is too low.

But it may also possible to cut 70% of the cost of the paid leave bill by just making it a benefit for parents. So with that:

Health Care (Medicaid + ACA): $510B
Paid PARENTAL Leave: $160B
Climate: $550B
Some kind of CTC extension: $280B
OK, I've been playing around some more. This is not a bill I actually expect Congress would pass, for a variety of reasons. But it's mostly to show that you can do a lot for $1.65 trillion. (And you could probably tweak this package down to $1.5T by playing with dates).
Here's Brookings on how to shave 64% from the dental, vision, and hearing benefits brookings.edu/essay/options-…

CRFB thinks Biden's pre-K proposal would have cost $150B, but elsewhere I've seen $200 crfb.org/blogs/joe-bide…
With Climate, I'm essentially imagining the carbon tax, minus gasoline, in lieu of the CEPP. Would Manchin ever go for it? I dunno, but it seems like people on the hill are treating it as a live option.
Meanwhile, the tax hikes Manchin outlined get you to around $1,250 on revenue, according to Marc. Carbon tax gets you a bit more (though most of it gets rebated). Prescription drugs miiiiiight make up most of the difference, depending on the plan.

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More from @JHWeissmann

1 Oct
So talking to people today about paid family and medical leave has been taking me back to when my dad's company fired him after he went in for a surgery and was essentially on his death bed. Definitely ghoulish. But now wondering: Also maybe illegal?
Sorry, probably TMI. But I'm, like, really curious now.
I am also tempted to call that company up and just be like: "Hey, you fired my dad while he was waging a doomed battle for his life in a hospital bed. What gives?"
Read 4 tweets
29 Sep
18 days is definitely enough time for Democrats to just raise the debt ceiling via reconciliation, as long as one Republican shows up to the committee hearing.
Like just do it, and raise it to a dumb number so we never have to worry about this again.
‘Republicans are going to run ads saying we voted to raise the debt to 100 googol.’ Ok, nobody is going to care.
Read 5 tweets
28 Sep
Is it possible that part of the answer here is just that the Census Household Pulse Survey...isn't very good? washingtonpost.com/business/2021/… Image
Like, this reminds me of how the CHHP seemed to suggest there'd been a large rise in food insecurity, which seemed like a puzzle since massive aid actually cut the poverty rate.

Turns out, the rise in hunger was kind of a phantom. nytimes.com/2021/09/08/us/…
OK. Coming back to this.

If you look at estimates of how many Americans owed back rent earlier in the year, the high-end ones relied heavily on Census Household Pulse Survey, which as we've established, has some question marks around it. Image
Read 4 tweets
28 Sep
My guess is that Powell ultimately gets 75 votes as a result of this. bloomberg.com/news/articles/…
Thom Thillis is gonna own Elizabeth Warren by confirming arguably the most pro-worker Fed chair we've had in 40 years. What a world.
Anyway, here were my 2,500 words on the whole thing from earlier in this month slate.com/business/2021/…
Read 4 tweets
28 Sep
Assuming Manchin demands heavy means testing on the child care, pre-k, and higher-ed pieces of the reconciliation bill, we’re going to have an odd situation where Democrats rely on UMC college grads to win elections while giving them very, very little on economic policy.
Maybe climate spending and culture war issues are enough for those voters? Except Dems have basically decided to fold on the courts, so they’ve more or less ceded the abortion battle nationally.
This is assuming the reconciliation bill passes at all, of course.
Read 5 tweets
24 Sep
Well, @Amtrak is a real clusterfuck today. Train delayed almost an hour with no explanation.
Apparently there is ‘no motor’ on train?
How do you screw up ‘having a motor on the train’?
Read 4 tweets

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