President Biden on Friday maintained that his spending bill would not add to the deficit and said it likely would not reach $3.5 trillion this year, as moderate and progressive Democrats continue to debate a price tag for the package.
But he pledged to continue to push for more spending, saying, "we're going to keep coming because the more we demonstrate it works, the more we can do."
Biden, during a visit to Connecticut Friday, touted the $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill, and the $3.5 trillion spending plan awaiting approval in Congress, saying they are "about strengthening the economy for decades to come."
"Both of these bills spend out over 10 years, take the infrastructure, build all those investments and roads, bridges, highways, high-speed internet, water, clean water, everything represents less than one half of one percent of our economy each year," Biden said. "If you add it all up, and the cost of the bill … in terms of adding to the deficit, is zero."
Biden said "we're probably not going to get $3.5 trillion this year, we're going to get something less than that."
"But I'm going to negotiate," he said. "I'm going to get it done with the grace of God."
Biden added that the plan is "paid for" because "big corporations and the very wealthy" will "start paying their fair share."
"Let me be clear, nobody — and since I got elected when I was campaigning — nobody, who makes under $400,000 a year, which is a lot of money, will see their taxes go up one single penny. Nobody, not one."
The president said his plan "cuts taxes for working people," and he is keeping "that commitment."
"There's no reason why, as I said, billionaires should pay a lower tax rate, literally a lower tax rate than a school teacher and a firefighter," the president said. "I don't think we should punish anybody, but just pay your fair share. Just pay your fair share."
Congressional Democrats are targeting the end of October to pass an infrastructure package and reconciliation. That timeline could slip into November or beyond amid the ongoing clashes between moderate and progressive Democrats on the size of the the president's $3.5 trillion spending plan.