President Biden’s hour-long joint address to Congress made note of some of his biggest achievements during his presidency. More importantly, though, he used it as an opportunity to introduce several major planned reforms that could have a significant impact on the lives of everyday Americans.
The first is his American Jobs Plan. As the name suggests, this is a plan aimed at rebuilding the American economy, which has been shattered by the pandemic. Interestingly, Biden takes something of an America first approach, but in a much more liberal way than his predecessor.
He plans to invest much of the bill’s $2.3 trillion budget into overhauling roads, bridges, broadband networks and water systems. In the process, jobs will be created and American products will be used. This sort of plan has a proven history of re-invigorating a country’s struggling economy.
But the bill also plans to address issues such as climate change and racial inequity. Infrastructure, the bill claims, goes well beyond the physical makeup of a country’s systems and includes things like paid tuition for community college, child support, and more.
Similarly, Biden proposed the American Families Plan. In essence, there is some crossover between this plan and the last, but the Families Plan is aimed more at providing a greater safety net for struggling families. The budget for this plan is almost $2 trillion, which brings Biden’s total spending proposals over his first 100 days in office to roughly $6 trillion. Even for the USA, this is a major sum of money.
How does he plan on funding this? Well, according to his joint address, partly with tax reforms. Importantly, though, these are aimed at only the richest American citizens (anyone earning over $400,000 a year). Normal, everyday working families won’t have to pay more tax than they already do, which stands in stark contrast to the proposals of his predecessor.
On all of these plans, Biden claims he is open to negotiation with Republicans. We can view this as a pre-emptive claim, as it’s unlikely these bills will pass in their current form. However, he specifically noted, “Doing nothing is not an option.”
Biden also looked abroad at improving the USA’s position on the global stage. He believes it is time the country provided leadership again rather than lagging behind. A prime example is America’s vaccine rollout, which he feels can serve as an example to other countries.
While foreign policy wasn’t a major branch of his speech, Biden acknowledged the important role vice president Kamala Harris has played in immigration crisis talks with Central American countries. The Biden administration has a much more positive attitude towards immigration, and part of their larger plan is to address issues in these countries that forces their citizens to seek refuge in the USA.
Biden’s attitude towards immigration extends to all areas, and, as a result, there hasn’t been a better time to apply for US citizenship. One of the easiest ways is through the Diversity Visa Program, which you can do now through the US Green Card Office.