DNC adviser claims Republicans responsible for inflation because of opposition to Build Back Better
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A senior adviser for the Democratic National Committee and ex-White House official said Republicans are to blame for inflation because they voted against President Biden’s Build Back Better Act, a plan that was originally intended to cost around $5 trillion.
DNC Senior Advisor and former Rep. Cedric Virginia, D-La. appeared on CNN Tuesday to answer Jake Tapper’s question about whether the Biden administration is responsible for the rising cost of living in the United States. Tapper said economists had predicted that Biden’s large spending agenda would infuse too much money into America’s economy, thereby accelerating inflation.
Richmond flatly denied the administration had contributed to U.S. inflation and pointed to Biden’s three-pronged plan to pull the U.S. out of the economic and social damages of the coronavirus pandemic, citing the American Rescue Plan and the bipartisan infrastructure package Biden signed into law.
President Biden speaks about inflation and supply chain issues at the Port of Los Angeles, Friday, June 10, 2022, in Los Angeles.
((AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes))
But Richmond said the third prong, Biden’s Build Back Better plan, was unsuccessful, and would have lowered the cost of eldercare, childcare, and healthcare. In his on-air response to Richmond, he called these things “household expenses” and blamed Republicans for inflation and not working to lower “household cost” by passing Biden’s agenda.
“All of the economists said if we passed the last portion of it [it would lower those costs] and so what you have is Republicans purposely obstructing it and keeping it from happening, then at the same time saying inflation is high,” Richmond told Tapper. He said that the administration is aware it must address inflation but Republicans have blocked legislation that has “continued sparking” inflation.
Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., a key infrastructure negotiator, signals to his staff as he works behind closed doors with other Democrats in a basement room at the Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, June 16, 2021.
((AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite))
Democrats narrowly control both chambers of Congress but have been stifled on passing the sprawling social policy package. Biden’s Build Back Better would have passed were it not for the opposition of two Democrats, Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., and Sen. Krysten Sinema, D-Ariz.
The DNC adviser’s claim that economists believed Build Back Better would lower costs, and not contribute to inflation, is questionable. Former White House press secretary Jen Psaki also said in November that “no economist” believed the plan would make inflation worse. Her claim was rejected by economists from JP Morgan Chase and Bank of America, who said that the economy appeared to be operating “very close to its capacity limitations.” Former Obama economic adviser Larry Summers expressed concern about the administration’s ability to prod inflation.
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre speaks during a press briefing at the White House, Monday, June 13, 2022, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
(AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
Karine Jean-Pierre, the current White House press secretary, was asked the same question as Richmond on Tuesday by CNN’s Don Lemon, who wondered if injecting too much money into the economy, and the administration’s role regarding inflation. She claimed that rising food prices and gas prices were solely due to Russia’s invasion. She referred to the American Rescue Plan as a tool to reduce inflation and not a catalyst.
“So, first of all, the American Rescue Plan met the moment, and it has put us in a place where we can actually put us in a place where the American people feel – can actually, we can take on inflation. That’s what I mean is that we’ve seen growth with more than 8 million jobs, as I mentioned. Lemon said that we are now moving into steady, stable growth.
Fox News’ Joseph A. Wulfsohn contributed to this report.
Nikolas Lanum is an associate editor for Fox News Digital.
I have been writing professionally for over 20 years and have a deep understanding of the psychological and emotional elements that affect people. I’m an experienced ghostwriter and editor, as well as an award-winning author of five novels.