Biden Calls for a Pathway for DREAMers and Further Border Militarization in SOTU

President Joe Biden delivered his second State of the Union handle Tuesday, touting his administration’s achievements and laying out his plans for the subsequent two years beneath a divided Congress, together with on immigration, the economic system, the local weather disaster and extra. We communicate with Democratic Congressmember Delia Ramirez, who delivered a response to Tuesday’s speech on behalf of the Working Households Get together, and economist Dean Baker, who each applaud Biden’s give attention to revenue inequality and making the wealthy pay extra in taxes. “He’s clearly moved to the left,” says Baker.


This can be a rush transcript. Copy is probably not in its last kind.

AMY GOODMAN: Throughout his State of the Union, President Biden urged lawmakers to assist elevating the debt ceiling. Let’s go to what he stated.

PRESIDENT JOE BIDEN: Almost 25% of the complete nationwide debt, that took over 200 years to build up, was added by only one administration alone, the final one. They’re the information. Test it out. Test it out. How did Congress reply to that debt? They did the best factor: They lifted the debt ceiling thrice with out preconditions or disaster. They paid American payments to stop an financial catastrophe for the nation.

So, tonight, I’m asking the Congress to comply with swimsuit. Let’s commit right here tonight that the total religion and credit score of the US of America won’t ever, ever be questioned.

So, my many — a few of my Republican pals wish to take the economic system hostage — I get it — until I comply with their financial plans. All of you at dwelling ought to know what these plans are. As a substitute of creating the rich pay their justifiable share, some Republicans — some Republicans need Medicare and Social Safety to sundown. I’m not saying it’s the bulk. Let me provide you with — anyone who doubts it, contact my workplace. I’ll provide you with a duplicate — I’ll provide you with a duplicate of the proposal.


PRESIDENT JOE BIDEN: Which means Congress doesn’t vote —


PRESIDENT JOE BIDEN: Effectively, I’m glad to see. No, I let you know, I get pleasure from conversion. , it means if Congress doesn’t maintain the applications the way in which they’re, they’d go away. Different Republicans say — I’m not saying it’s nearly all of you. I don’t even assume it’s even a big — nevertheless it’s being proposed by people. I’m not — politely not naming them, nevertheless it’s being proposed by a few of you. Look, of us —


PRESIDENT JOE BIDEN: — the thought is that we’re not going to be — we’re not going to be moved into being threatened to default on the debt if we don’t reply. People … so, of us, as all of us apparently agree, Social Safety and Medicare is off the books now, proper? They’re to not be touched. All proper. All proper. We’ve bought unanimity.

AMY GOODMAN: What our radio listeners can’t see that our TV viewers do see is that proper behind President Biden, after all, on this new McCarthy period, is Home Speaker McCarthy, who was additionally shaking his head as he was speaking about Medicare and Social Safety being lower, and also you had Marjorie Taylor Greene shouting “Liar! Liar!” Your response — this is a matter that may be very near your coronary heart, Congressmember Ramirez — to the problem of the debt ceiling and utilizing it as a approach to lower Social Safety and Medicare?

REP. DELIA RAMIREZ: Yeah, look, I must applaud the president for what he stated final evening. When he stated, “We’re not chopping Social Safety or Medicare, not right this moment, not tomorrow, not ever,” I stand absolutely in solidarity with him. The concept that we start a dialog of negotiation over the issues which might be retaining folks alive and retaining folks from residing in deep poverty the previous couple of years of their life needs to be one thing that might be unimaginable on this nation. And but we’ve Republicans — possibly not all of them, however a superb variety of them — that wish to use it as a negotiating cut price: “I’ll provide you with Social Safety, however let’s lower SNAP advantages. I’ll provide you with Medicare; we simply can’t broaden it.” That form of negotiation is weird to me. Final I checked, poverty doesn’t have a coloration crimson or blue. Individuals want Social Safety in Kentucky. Individuals want Social Safety in Illinois. Individuals want Social Safety in Oklahoma. And so they definitely want it in Georgia.

AMY GOODMAN: I wish to deliver Dean Baker into the dialog, senior economist on the Heart for Financial and Coverage Analysis, his most up-to-date ebook, Rigged: How Globalization and Guidelines of the Fashionable Economic system Have been Structured to Make the Wealthy Richer. In case you can take off from this challenge of Social Safety and Medicare, as Republicans had been shouting “liar” at President Biden, after which go on to speak about President Biden speaking concerning the billionaires’ tax and in addition rising a tax on individuals who make $400,000 or extra?

DEAN BAKER: Yeah, I’ve to say it was nice to listen to President Biden rise up in defending Social Safety and Medicare. I’ve been round lengthy sufficient. I keep in mind President Clinton was not pushing it, however he was keen to contemplate cuts to Social Safety, cuts to Medicare, and identical with President Obama. And it was simply nice to see President Biden simply rise up there and go, “No, we’re not chopping it. It’s not on the agenda.” So, that was a very, actually good factor to see him change from prior Democratic administrations. An excellent one.

And anyhow, so, President Biden was — he has loads to boast about. He, after all, spent a whole lot of time within the speech speaking about 12 million jobs, 800,000 manufacturing jobs, lowest unemployment price in 50 years, lowest Black unemployment price ever. He didn’t point out this, however I feel an essential level: We have now a report variety of folks with disabilities who are actually in a position to work, report low unemployment price for folks with disabilities. I assume that’s largely due to elevated make money working from home. These are all actually, actually massive offers to hundreds of thousands and hundreds of thousands of individuals. Homeownership price has risen for Blacks, for younger folks. A number of excellent news there.

However when it comes to — I shouldn’t say when it comes to coverage — like, that wasn’t coverage, as a result of that was due to his Restoration Act. However, particularly, he has been targeted on making an attempt to extend taxes on the wealthy, taxes on firms, and in addition lowering the cash that drug firms get. And once more, he’s made some headway right here. Clearly, he’d love to do extra. I’d like to see him do extra. However he’s had actually massive breakthroughs. I imply, rising the funding for the Inside Income Service, that’s a giant deal. I imply, you may have a variety of the richest folks within the nation get away with paying no taxes. A number of it’s gaming. It means it’s authorized. However a whole lot of it’s unlawful. And that’s simple. I imply, we must always lower down on the gaming, however meaning altering the legislation. However implementing the legislation needs to be simple, needs to be easy. And he’s gotten elevated assets for the IRS to try this, and that needs to be a very massive deal. He’s making an attempt to get a minimal tax on billionaires. Once more, that when you’re among the many richest folks within the nation, you ought to be paying at the least 20% of your revenue in taxes, that hardly looks as if an outrageous scenario. Additionally for firms, once more, making an attempt to have a minimal tax — firms pay at the least 15% of their income in tax, at the least the large worthwhile ones. These are actually, actually massive offers.

And in addition, I ought to point out one thing he really did get within the Inflation Discount Act. He bought a tax on inventory buybacks, a small one, one share level, however that’s a giant deal. To my view, it’s — I’d like to see us have extra give attention to inventory buybacks, dividend payouts, returns to shareholders, as a result of these are issues we see. So, the company revenue tax is at present based mostly on income. We don’t see income. Company accountants inform us what income are. However when you tax share buybacks, they’ll’t disguise these. We see them. And he desires to quadruple that from 1% to 4%. And once more, nice coverage. Clearly, the businesses have it, or they wouldn’t be paying it, paying it out to their shareholders, so it’s not a query that we’re going to be placing them out of enterprise. These are very worthwhile firms. Income have been manner up. So, there’s a whole lot of superb issues in his agenda that he hit on final evening. And it’ll be laborious to get by means of this Congress, however he ought to at the least be pushing them, and I’m positive he’ll.

AMY GOODMAN: Let’s return to President Biden speaking concerning the local weather disaster and taxes.

PRESIDENT JOE BIDEN: Let’s face actuality. The local weather disaster doesn’t care when you’re in a crimson or blue state. It’s an existential menace. We have now an obligation, to not ourselves however to our youngsters and our grandchildren, to confront it. I’m pleased with how America, eventually, is stepping as much as the problem. We’re nonetheless going to want oil and fuel for some time, however guess what. No, we do. However there’s a lot extra to do. We’ve bought to complete the job. And we pay for these investments in our future by lastly making the wealthiest and largest firms start to pay their justifiable share. Simply start. Look, I’m a capitalist. I’m a capitalist, however pay your justifiable share.

AMY GOODMAN: Delia Ramirez, your response? And what may be achieved on this Republican Home?

REP. DELIA RAMIREZ: Effectively, I feel it’s actually attention-grabbing that after we talked about lowering taxes for working-class households, not a Republican applauds. If you discuss taxing or a justifiable share tax for firms and billionaires, not a Republican applauds. However while you discuss oil and fuel, a whole lot of their company donors, all of them clap. I actually hope that the American folks see the hypocrisy that I noticed in that chamber final evening.

I applaud the president for what he stated. I assumed he sounded extremely progressive when he stated that. And it’s one thing that a variety of us have been saying for a really, very very long time. The concept that you make $80,000 a yr and you might be being taxed greater than a billionaire is unacceptable. It’s enraging. That’s what I hear on the doorways. I hear about property tax and revenue tax: “If I make somewhat extra, I’m really making much less due to how a lot I’m paying in taxes.” That’s unacceptable. In case you make $6 billion a yr and also you pay your justifiable share at 20%, right here’s the factor, you’re nonetheless a billionaire with $4 billion.

I applaud him, and I feel there’s a variety of issues we may very well be doing by means of govt motion. And that’s what I used to be speaking about final evening. Look, I don’t faux to imagine or consider that one way or the other we’re going have a miracle, and a quantity — possibly six or seven Republicans are going to come back our manner, as a result of I hear them speaking behind the chamber: “, you’re proper. It’s really a very good piece of laws. You’re proper. We shouldn’t be voting for that.” However after they get into that chamber, they vote that social gathering line, even when they don’t agree with it. So I do know that we received’t have the legislative motion that we’d like on this Congress. However we’ve to do all the things in our energy by means of govt motion to make sure that we offer the protections, that we offer the assets, that we construct the economic system with working households on the heart of it. And after we try this, after we present those that we discover artistic methods to guard and assist, then the American folks will go to the poll field and keep in mind that in 2024, so we will get the bulk we’d like, and no excuses, and go the laws we must always on local weather, on immigration, on housing, on economic system, elevating the minimal wage, attending to a residing wage. Let’s present what we will do now.

AMY GOODMAN: And, economist Dean Baker, what you are feeling may be achieved on this Republican Home? And an extremely essential level that Congressmember Ramirez raised is the strain that’s been introduced on Biden to — this isn’t the Biden you may have adopted for many years, Dean.

DEAN BAKER: Yeah, he’s clearly moved to the left, which, once more, clearly, a response to strain. I imply, the progressive segments of the Democratic Get together are much more essential right this moment than they had been 30 years in the past. So, that’s clearly behind his motion. However it’s an amazing factor to see. I imply, once more, I don’t know the way a lot he’ll be capable to accomplish on this Congress.

However I’ll simply level out, you’re referring — properly, we had the part on his speech about local weather change. We’ve turned the dial on that. I don’t imply to say, , clearly, local weather change goes to proceed to be an unlimited downside. We’re going to undergo monumental hardships right here and elsewhere on the planet, after all. However we’ve a lot modified the image along with his infrastructure invoice, and significantly the Inflation Discount Act. You now have firms which might be all in on electrical automobiles, large industries when it comes to photo voltaic and wind. That may’t be turned again. So, that’s actually, actually enormous. Now, clearly, we’re going to should do much more. We have now to maintain the strain up. However we’ve to acknowledge what’s been accomplished. We’re transferring ahead with a clear vitality transition. That’s not stoppable.

AMY GOODMAN: Effectively, Dean Baker, we wish to thanks a lot for being with us from Astoria, Oregon, senior economist on the Heart for Financial and Coverage Analysis, and Congressmember Delia Ramirez, Democrat of Illinois, talking to us from the Capitol.

That does it for our present. Democracy Now! is produced with Renée Feltz, Mike Burke, Deena Guzder, Messiah Rhodes, Nermeen Shaikh, María Taracena, Tami Woronoff, Charina Nadura, Sam Alcoff, Tey-Marie Astudillo, John Hamilton, Robby Karran, Hany Massoud and Sonyi Lopez. Our govt director is Julie Crosby. Particular due to Becca Staley, Jon Randolph, Paul Powell, Mike Di Filippo, Miguel Nogueira, Hugh Gran, Denis Moynihan, David Prude. I’m Amy Goodman. Thanks for becoming a member of us.