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Alabama congressmen react to Biden’s Build Back Better Act

The act would create universal preschool for all 3- and 4-year olds and provide numerous expansions of the social safety net.

Congressman Mike Rogers speaking on the floor of the U.S. House with other members of the Alabama Congressional Delegation. (VIA CSPAN)

Alabama’s congressional delegation in the U.S. House reacted along party lines to President Joe Biden’s $1.75 trillion Build Back Better Act, which passed in the House and now heads to the U.S. Senate. 

The act would establish universal preschool for all 3- and 4-year olds, cap childcare costs at 7 percent of income for parents earning up to 250 percent of a state’s median income, provide 4 weeks of federal paid parental, sick or caregiver leave, provide a year of expanded Child Tax Credits, set a $35 per-month limit on the cost of insulin through Medicare, and cap out-of-pocket prescription drug costs at $2,000 per year, among other social safety net expansions. 

Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Alabama, on Thursday evening before the Friday vote made the following statement:

“While Americans are struggling this holiday season with rapid inflation, Nancy Pelosi and Democrats are trying to ram through President Biden’s $1.5 trillion tax and spend bill – burdening taxpayers. President Biden’s socialist scheme will tax middle class Americans and subsidize Green New Deal initiatives while hurting American energy development. This deal also includes amnesty for millions of illegal immigrants while the crisis at our southern border rages on. Their desperation to pass this legislation proves what we’ve known all along – Nancy Pelosi and Joe Biden are out of touch with Americans. I will be standing up for my constituents and voting no President Biden’s egregious Build Back Broke scheme.”

Rep. Terri Sewell, D-Alabama, in Friday tweets: 

“After @POTUS took office, we passed the #AmericanRescuePlan to rescue our nation from the pandemic. Then, we delivered the largest infrastructure investment in nearly a century. Now, with the #BuildBackBetter Act, we’re building an economy that puts working families FIRST!”

Sewell said the “Build Back Better Act will: Close the Medicaid coverage gap,  lower health care costs, lower drug costs, lower child care costs, establish paid family & medical leave, create universal pre-K, extend the child tax credit, address the climate crisis and more. 

“For too long, those at the top have seen their fortunes grow while hard-working Americans have been squeezed. Not anymore—the #BuildBackBetter Act uplifts Alabama’s most underserved communities with transformational progress! Together, we will continue to deliver #ForThePeople!!,” Sewell said. 

Rep. Gary Palmer, R-Alabama, made a Thursday tweet on the act.

“The CBO confirmed that the Dem #BuildBackBroke Act would add $367 BILLION to our deficit over the next decade. It also includes: Mass amnesty, Huge tax breaks for the wealthy, Crippling tax burdens on small businesses, Taxpayer funded abortion. This must be stopped,” Palmer said. 

Rep. Jerry Carl, R-Alabama, in a Friday tweet: 

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 “Thank you, @GOPLeader McCarthy, for fighting the Democrats’ efforts to bankrupt America and saddle hardworking families with higher taxes. #BuildBackBetter is a BAD deal!,” Carl said. 

Rep. Robert Aderholt, R-Alabama, in Friday tweets. 

“Americans are already hurting from inflation that’s the highest in a generation.  Adding trillions upon trillions of more spending will only make this worse.  Build Back Better is filled with new taxes on hardworking Americans.” “It gives tax cuts to the wealthy, hikes taxes on middle-class families, and adds hundreds of billions to the already morbidly obese national debt,” Aderholt said. 

Rep. Mo Brooks, R-Alabama, in Friday tweets. 

“I voted “No” on HR5376, Joe Biden’s massive 2,468-page, multi-trillion spending monstrosity.” “HR5376 raises taxes, increases welfare, grants amnesty for illegal aliens, authorizes a federal takeover of local public schools, and does who knows what else because it has been crammed through the House without adequate time for Americans, & Congressmen, to properly review it,” Brooks said.

The bill now heads to the U.S. Senate, where Democrats will need to guide the legislation through a divided 50-50 chamber. If it passes, it is likely to be reshaped by conservative Democratic Sens. Joe Manchin III and Kyrsten Sinema, who have yet to endorse the legislation. Democrats will need all 50 of their members to pass the law.

Eddie Burkhalter is a reporter at the Alabama Political Reporter. You can email him at [email protected] or reach him via Twitter.

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