WASHINGTON — Representative Pramila Jayapal (WA-07), chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, issued the following statement upon Senate passage of the Inflation Reduction Act:
“After more than a year of negotiations, we are thrilled the Senate has finally passed a reconciliation bill with every Democrat voting in support. The Inflation Reduction Act includes many pieces of the House-passed Build Back Better Act to make the largest-ever federal investment in tackling the existential threat of climate change, lower healthcare costs, and begin to ensure that corporations pay their fair share.
“The Congressional Progressive Caucus was essential to ensuring that the President’s economic agenda was drafted and passed in the House. While we are heartbroken to see several essential pieces on the care economy, housing, and immigration left on the cutting room floor — as well as a successful Republican effort to remove insulin price caps for those with private insurance — we know that the Inflation Reduction Act takes real steps forward on key progressive priorities.
“The bill will cut carbon emissions by 40 percent by 2030 through rapidly accelerating the adoption of renewable-energy technologies such as electric vehicles, heat pumps, and solar panels, saving the average family $1,025 a year in energy costs and creating millions of good jobs. It will immediately extend affordable health insurance coverage to 13 million people, cap seniors’ yearly drug costs at $2,000 per year, and cap insulin at $35 per month for seniors on Medicare. It takes on Big Pharma by, for the first time ever, allowing Medicare to begin negotiating prices for a small group of drugs that expands over time. The bill also imposes a 15 percent minimum tax on corporations, taxes corporations that inflate their share values through stock buybacks, and invests in the IRS to go after large corporations that evade taxes. As President Biden has promised, the bill won’t raise taxes on any family making less than $400,000 per year.
“Let us be clear: we do not support the bill’s new provisions that expand fossil fuel leasing. However, independent analyses show that their limited impact will be far outweighed by the carbon emissions cuts this legislation accomplishes.
“Progressives in Congress and in the movement held the line and demanded action on these priorities, ensuring that we got to where we are today. Together with President Biden, progressives across the country and in Congress should take credit for the enormous progress made in this bill toward our movements’ long standing work: pushing the federal government to act on the climate crisis, taking on the greed of Big Pharma, lowering health care costs, and reining in the power of the wealthy and large corporations — passed in the Senate without a single Republican vote. We look forward to voting for this bill as it comes to the House and sending it to the President’s desk immediately.”