Fortunately for Joe Biden, Mitch McConnell is a one-trick pony whose trick is getting old.
On Monday, the GOP Senate minority leader effectively shot an arrow through the heart of any negotiations over President Biden's revolutionary proposals to invest some $4 trillion in the country's future.
"I think it's worth talking about but I don't think there will be any Republican support—none, zero—for the $4.1 trillion grab bag which has infrastructure in it but a whole lot of other stuff," McConnell told reporters in Louisville.
UPDATE: Biden’s itching to have this fight. From a Monday event promoting his Jobs/Families plan: “So for folks at home, I’d like to ask a question: Do we want to give the wealthiest people in America another tax cut, or do you want to give every high school graduate the ability to earn a community college degree on their way to good-paying jobs, or on the way to four years of school in industries of the future—healthcare, IT, cybersecurity, you name it?”
“Other stuff,” as in creating millions of jobs, bringing millions of women back into the workforce through universal child care, and educating the nation's workforce for a new century.
In other words, it's actually not worth talking about. Republicans are proposing crumbs in response to Biden's plan—about $568 billion to be exact. As McConnell put it, “We’re open to doing a roughly $600 billion package,” but nothing more. Oh, and Republicans "are not going to revisit the 2017 tax bill," which McConnell hailed as the "most significant domestic accomplishment" from the Tump era.
Right, to repeat, in case anyone missed what McConnell said the first time: This negotiation is over.
Unlike the $2 trillion Republicans tacked on to the national deficit in order to give a giant tax cut to the rich and corporate-y, President Biden is actually trying to make a dent in paying for the investments he wants to make in the country. The way he plans to do that is by raising taxes on those who can most afford it: the nation's wealthiest households along with major corporations, which had their tax rates slashed from 35% to 21% by the GOP in 2017. Biden also plans to crack down on tax cheats in order to fund his proposals, the American Families Plan and American Jobs Plan.
So when McConnell draws a line in the sand at rolling back the GOP tax giveaway to the rich, he may as well be flipping Biden and the rest of the country the bird. Another way of putting it is, Republicans are perfectly willing to kill job creation on the way to shielding major corporations and the top 1% of income earners from paying their fair share.
The truth is, Democrats gave low- and middle-income earners a bigger tax cut through the $1.9 trillion pandemic relief than Republicans ever did in their 2017 tax law.
Now Republicans are doubling down on their wildly unpopular tax gift to the rich in order to justify standing in the way of progress for the entire nation. That's all right, you do you, GOP.
You just made Biden's deal-making considerations much, much easier.