To quote Gomer Pyle USMC, “Surprise, surprise, surprise!”
The humongous spending bill awaiting Joe Manchin to sign off on it will cost almost double what the CBO said it would. Why? Because spending programs in Washington DC never get cancelled, they only grow.
The Committee For A Responsible Federal Budget estimates that the true cost of Build Back Better is $4.91 TRILLION, up from the stated $2.39 TRILLION. Once they assumed that the programs don’t sunset and get extended.
According to their analysis,
“We estimate the House Build Back Better Act includes roughly $2.4 trillion of spending and tax cuts along with roughly $2.2 trillion of offsets.However, the bill relies on a number of sunsets and expirations to keep the official cost down. If the plan’s temporary policies were made permanent, we find the cost would increase by as much as $2.5 trillion.As a result, the gross cost of the bill would more than double from $2.4 trillion to $4.9 trillion.
The Build Back Better Act relies on a number of arbitrary sunsets and expirations to lower the official cost of the bill. These include extending the American Rescue Plan’s Child Tax Credit (CTC) increase and Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) expansion for a year, setting universal pre-K and child care subsidies to expire after six years, making the Affordable Care Act (ACA) expansions available through 2025, delaying the requirement that businesses amortize research and experimentation (R&E) costs until 2026, and setting several other provisions – from targeted tax credits to school lunch programs – to expire prematurely.
Excluding changes to the state and local tax (SALT) deduction, we estimate the Build Back Better Act would cost $2.1 trillion as written. We estimate making all of these temporary policies permanent would cost roughly $2.2 trillion, more than doubling the gross cost of the bill to $4.3 trillion through 2031.”
When asked about the Center for a Responsible Budget saying the bill could be twice as expensive, Manchin replies “it’s concerning. Sure. It’s concerning.”
Surprise, surprise, surprise! And it is certainly more expensive than the estimate Biden gave: $0.