During the 2020 presidential election race, Joe Biden barely campaigned at all but the next time around he will not have COVID-19 to use as an excuse to hide in his Delaware basement. Though the current resident of the White House has not yet announced he is running for re-election in 2024, he may be looking to get a head start. Mr. Biden – along with the First Lady, several cabinet members, and Kamala Harris – will be touring multiple states for an Invest in America tour “to highlight how Biden’s economic agenda is growing the economy from the middle-out and bottom-up, not top down,” according to the White House website.
The Invest in America tour – some would say the title is more than a little ironic – begins on March 28 when Biden visits a semiconductor manufacturer in Durham, North Carolina. More than 20 states will be graced with a visit from either Joe or Jill Biden or one of the members of his Invest in America Cabinet. Venues include some of the key 2024 election states such as Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Georgia, and Colorado but North Carolina – arguably the most pivotal battleground state – gets special attention. In addition to a visit from Mr. Biden, the Tar Heel State will, in the next week, play host to Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Michael Regan and Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo.
While not even the most zealous conservative would criticize a Democrat for encouraging more investment in America, he or she might harbor a little suspicion that Biden is trying to take a leaf out of his likely 2024 challenger’s playbook. Former President Donald Trump was, after all, the most vocal commander-in-chief in recent memory when it comes to buying American and investing in America.
But the key thing, here, is that the administration’s message is less about encouraging investment in America and more about saying to the American people, look how much money (how much of your money and money we just printed) we have invested in America, bless our hearts.
Invest in America by the Numbers
This public relations offensive is built around touting the alleged benefits of several key pieces of legislation: The Inflation Reduction Act, the CHIPS and Science Act, the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, and the American Rescue Plan.
How much has this Invest in America agenda cost, though? According to figures from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), Biden managed to rack up some $3.37 trillion in new spending between taking office in January of 2021 and the end of 2022. That’s a record; surpassing even the $3.28 trillion spent in the final two years of Trump’s presidency – which included COVID-related expenditures.
At the end of fiscal year 2020 – just weeks before Biden came to the White House – the national debt stood at just over $27.7 trillion. Now, a little more than two years later, that number is already up to $31.6 trillion. For comparison, the national debt increased by about $3.2 trillion between the end of fiscal year 2016 and the end of 2019 – so, more or less, Trump’s first three years in office. The pandemic-related spending of 2020 shot the debt up from right around $22.7 trillion to more than $27.7 trillion.
The four pieces of legislation mentioned above cost, respectively, $740 billion, $255 billion, $765 billion, and a staggering $1.8 trillion. Additionally, the CBO says that some of Biden’s executive orders from 2021 and 2022 will collectively cost the American taxpayer another $532 billion. This all represents just a part of how much spending Mr. Biden has approved in the past two years. By the time the 2024 election rolls around, it is reasonable to assume the national debt will be hovering somewhere close to $35 trillion and quite possibly above that number.
The chief executive and his band of big spenders will have a hard time selling the benefits of all this investment to people who can no longer afford to buy eggs.
All opinions expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of Liberty Nation.
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