The Washington Times Weekly
The hidden energy tax
Biden punishes the ‘ordinary people’ that he claims to care about
The climate change provisions in President Biden’s “Infrastructure” Plan will cost American households $1,400 each year. Last Wednesday, Mr. Biden tried to defend raising taxes to help pay for his $2.65 trillion plan, saying he’s “not trying to punish anyone … [but he’s] sick and tired of ordinary people being fleeced.”
So are we, especially when the fleecing is done by the president and his administration and especially when it is carefully hidden.
Let’s take the climate change provisions of the “infrastructure” plan for example.
The Center for Strategic and International Studies analyzed the contents of Mr. Biden’s plan and concluded that more than half (56%) “could be understood to address … climate change.” Given the plan’s price tag of $2.65 trillion over eight years — or about $330 billion a year — that means that somewhere north of $180 billion would be spent on climate change each and every year of the plan.
Is that a lot? Well, there are about 130 million households in the United States, so when you boil it all down, Mr. Biden would require American households, on average, to pay about $1,400 a year to address climate change.
Yikes. $1,400 a year per household tax on energy seems like a lot, especially for those already struggling — the poor, the elderly, those on fixed incomes and local institutions.
Make no mistake. No matter how Mr. Biden tries to portray the tax increases embedded in his plan, they will all ultimately be paid by consumers, taxpayers or ratepayers — you know, the “ordinary people” Mr. Biden claims to care about — through higher taxes, lower wages or reduced economic growth.
Way back in February 2019, our friends at the American Energy Alliance did a survey of 1,005 nationwide likely voters and asked them how much they would be willing to pay each year to address climate change. The median answer — the one right in the middle of the responses — was $50. More than a third of the respondents said “zero.”
We have seen more recent research from earlier this year that indicates those numbers are actually lower now than they were in 2019; that voters have less tolerance for government-imposed increases in energy prices.
That is not surprising given the pandemic and the associated economic downturn.
The federal government already spends $30 billion each year on climate change. That’s a little less than $250 per household per year, which is somewhere between 5 and 10 times as much as voters seem willing to spend.
By adding $1,400 more each year to that already impressive burden, Mr. Biden is punishing someone — he is punishing the “ordinary people” that he claims to care about.