SEPTEMBER 29, 2021
Kuttner on TAP
Get a Grip: There Will Be a Budget Resolution
One. There has never not been a budget. These partisan games go on, and on, and on, but in the end there is always a budget.

Two. The U.S. will not default on its debt (see Item One).

Three. The Congressional Progressive Caucus is not the problem. Josh Gottheimer’s gang of ten corporate Democrats in the House plus Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema in the Senate are the problem. Biden’s own program is almost indistinguishable from that of the House progressives—they are the Biden loyalists.

Four. If anything is more important than a big bottom line for Build Back Better, it is voting rights. It’s worth sacrificing some public investment now and coming back for more later, if we can get Manchin to support one-time filibuster suspension to pass the voting rights bill of which he is now a lead sponsor. Joe—your name is on the damned bill!

Five. Even a public-investment budget of $2 trillion over eight years is well worth doing, because there is also over a trillion dollars of spending disguised as “middle-class tax cuts” such as the Child Tax Credit, an expanded EITC, and a refundable credit for child care.

Six. Biden needs a win, even with a reduced bottom line, so that the media echo chamber will stop writing about his “failed presidency.” The lazy, copycat media is always looking for a new morning line. Here’s one: Good old Joe pulled it out. We always knew he would. (Sheee-it.)

Seven. Want to feel a lot better? Have a look at this comprehensive report on election trends from Pew. The electorate is unmistakably trending Democratic, especially younger voters. That’s why Republicans want a dictatorship—and why we need to be sure there will be a real election.

Eight. Enough defeatism! We can do this.
Why aren’t insurance companies aggressively fighting climate change, and minimizing catastrophes? Look at their balance sheets. BY ALEXANDER SAMMON
Bernie Sanders to House Progressives: Hold Strong or the Senate Will Tank Biden’s Agenda
Dozens of Progressive Caucus members remain steadfastly opposed to a bipartisan infrastructure bill without being paired with a more expansive reconciliation package. BY JULIA ROCK & RYAN GRIM
Wall Street’s Attacks on Biden Nominee Are a Red Herring
Industry criticism of OCC pick Saule Omarova for wanting to end private banking masks their real fear of losing their derivatives businesses. BY DAVID DAYEN & LEE HARRIS
How to Vaccinate the World
There’s a lot more the Biden administration can do to stop the pandemic—like no more kowtowing to pharma. BY TIMI IWAYEMI & FATOU NDIAYE
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