September 28, 2023

President Biden will sign climate and health legislation at the White House Tuesday, after many months of Democratic negotiations. 

In the weeks ahead, the White House says the president will travel across the country to articulate how the bill, which is entitled the Inflation Reduction Act, will help Americans. He’ll also host an event celebrating the enactment of the bill on Sept. 6.

“This historic bill will lower the cost of energy, prescription drugs, and other health care for American families, combat the climate crisis, reduce the deficit, and make the largest corporations pay their fair share of taxes,” the White House promised in announcing the signing Tuesday. 

The bill passed the House and Senate along party lines last week, after Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer announced they had finally struck a deal. 

The measure will invest almost $400 billion in energy and climate projects aimed at reducing carbon emissions by 40% in 2030. It will also limit out-of-pocket drug expenses for seniors to $2,000 annually, and allow Medicare to negotiate with drugmakers on prescription prices. The legislation also sends $80 billion in funding to the IRS, allowing for the hiring of thousands of more employees to audit taxpayers.

But exactly how much the bill will do to live up to its namesake is unclear. A model from Penn Wharton says the bill won’t measurably affect inflation, and the Congressional Budget Office called the impact on inflation “negligible” this year before helping lower inflation in later years. Still, the White House points to a letter signed by more than 120 economists promoting the bill and insisting it will put “downward pressure on inflation by reducing the government’s budget deficit by an estimated $300 billion over the next decade.”

Democrats are hoping the passage of the legislation will boost their prospects ahead of the midterm elections this fall.

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