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Raimondo to Challenge Business Lobby on Biden Tax Increases

Bloomberg logoBloomberg 9/9/2021 Jenny Leonard
Gina Raimondo wearing a blue shirt: Raimondo to Challenge Business Lobby on Biden’s Tax Increases © Bloomberg Raimondo to Challenge Business Lobby on Biden’s Tax Increases

(Bloomberg) -- U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo will challenge business-community complaints about tax increases included in President Joe Biden’s proposed social-spending package, urging in a speech Thursday that companies should instead support his economic agenda.

In her remarks, Raimondo will argue that the plan is essential for supporting American families as well as the long-term growth and stability of the economy, according to excerpts obtained by Bloomberg. The programs will benefit everyone in the country, especially businesses, she will say. 

“President Biden came into office promising to find common ground to get things done -- and he’s delivering on that promise,” Raimondo will say in remarks to be delivered virtually to the City Club of Cleveland. “But, we need America’s business community to partner with us in that effort.”

The House is set this month to begin advancing the $3.5 trillion social spending package, which includes new education, care-giving and climate programs, but liberal and moderate factions of congressional Democrats are still divided over how much to spend and how to offset the cost. 

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Republicans are unified in opposition to the legislation, and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce has vowed to defeat it, saying in a statement last month that the bill would “dramatically expand the size and scope of government through record levels of inflationary spending and impose massive tax increases that will halt America’s fragile economic recovery.”

Raimondo plans to urge companies to propose alternative ways of offsetting the increased spending Biden has put forward. 

“I’d also suggest that if the business community doesn’t like the pay-fors we’ve proposed, it’s time to come up with some real alternatives that don’t raise taxes on middle class families,” she will say. “Because the one thing we cannot afford is inaction.”

(Adds excerpts from speech starting in 2nd paragraph.)

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