Mr. Biden will also express support for Congress allowing Americans as young as 60 years old to enroll in Medicare, and for efforts in Congress to reduce federal spending on prescription drugs, including allowing Medicare to negotiate prices with pharmaceutical companies, the document shows. It supports an expansion of Medicare to cover dental, vision and hearing services. Those efforts have been a top priority for Senator Bernie Sanders, independent of Vermont, the chairman of the budget committee. They are presented as goals in the budget but are not included in the proposed spending.
“Health care is a right, not a privilege,” the document reads. “Families need the financial security and peace of mind that comes with quality, affordable health coverage.”
The budget is simply a request to Congress, which must approve federal spending. But with Democrats in control both chambers of Congress, Mr. Biden faces some of the best odds of any president in recent history in having much of his agenda approved, particularly if he can reach agreement with lawmakers on parts of his infrastructure agenda.
If Mr. Biden’s plans were enacted, the government would spend what amounts to nearly a quarter of the nation’s total economic output every year over the course of the next decade. It would collect tax revenues equal to just under one fifth of the total economy.
In each year of Mr. Biden’s budget, the government would spend more as a share of the economy than all but two years since World War II: 2020 and 2021, which were marked by trillions of dollars in federal spending to help people and businesses endure the pandemic-induced recession. By 2028, when Mr. Biden could be finishing a second term in office, the government would be collecting more tax revenue as a share of the economy than almost any point in modern statistical history; the only other comparable period was the end of President Bill Clinton’s second term, when the economy was roaring and the budget was in surplus.
The documents also show the conservative approach Mr. Biden’s economic team is taking with regard to projecting the economy’s growth, as compared to his predecessor’s. Mr. Biden’s aides predict that even if his full agenda were enacted, the economy would grow at just under 2 percent per year for most of the decade, after accounting for inflation. That rate is similar to the historically sluggish pace of growth that the nation has averaged over the past 20 years. Unemployment would fall to 4.1 percent by next year — from 6.1 percent today — and remain below 4 percent in the years thereafter.
Former President Donald J. Trump consistently submitted budget proposals that predicted his policies would push the economy to a sustained annual rate of nearly 3 percent for a full decade. In his four years in office, annual growth only reached that rate once. The final budget submitted by President Barack Obama, when Mr. Biden was vice president, predicted annual growth of about 2.3 percent on average over the span of a decade.