WASHINGTON (Fwrd Axis) — The House passed a sweeping climate and health care bill on Friday in a significant win for President Joe Biden and the Democrats with the midterm elections in less than three months.
The vote was passed along party lines and will now head to Biden’s desk for his signature. The legislation passed the Senate on Sunday in a 51-50 vote, with Vice President Kamala Harris breaking the tie. The move is a massive legislative win for the Democrats after months of talks breaking off only to start up again.
“In terms of climate, this is the most consequential piece of legislation we will pass,” said Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.). “It is also the first time that we are at least getting a toe in the door of Big Pharma is price gouging.”
The House vote was 220-207, breaking among party lines with all Democrats in support while all Republicans voted against the bill.
The bill would raise over $700 billion through corporate tax increases and prescription drug savings in a rare but major loss for the pharmaceutical lobby. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) called on all Republicans to vote against the bill, calling it a “half a trillion spending spree that would raise taxes during a recession.”
“When this bill comes to the House, I urge everyone to vote No,” he said.
Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) has said the bill, known as the Inflation Reduction Act, will do little to curb inflation but he voted for its passage anyway, saying the bill was a worthy down payment.
Biden’s original Build Back Better Act included key programs such as universal preschool, paid family leave, and an expanded child tax credit.
“There would be no Inflation Reduction Act without Build Back Better, and there would be no Build Back Better without the work of the progressive caucus,” Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-N.Y.) said.
The 10-year, $739 billion package will raise taxes on corporations while reducing the deficit by about $100 billion over the next decade.