Electric cars, drug prices and more: 5 battles Democrats may lose in their own tent

Electric cars, drug prices and more: 5 battles Democrats may lose in their own tent

However, the Senate Finance Chairman Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), whose panel oversaw the drafting of huge chunks of the bill, did not acknowledge concerns about unresolved policy issues or rushed deadlines.

“We’ve been preparing for this… for a year and a half. We went out and recruited people as if they were basketball stars because they know so well how you successfully manage this extraordinary procedural herd,” said Wyden, a former college hoops player.

The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office released an official estimate Wednesday that the overall Democratic bill, as currently written, would reduce the deficit by about $101.5 billion over a decade. USD, excluding provisions that enhance IRS enforcement. Including these measures would reduce the deficit to $305 billion. USD, the CBO said.

Of course, the bill could remain unchanged as Democrats scramble to finish it this week. Here are five provisions that may need to be repealed or replaced under Senate budget rules:

Limit insulin costs

Democrats plan to push for a major addition to their larger legislation: a $35-a-month cap on what people can pay out-of-pocket for insulin. They know full well that Republicans can easily screw it up; the measure raises an obvious red flag under budget rules because it could target drug companies’ finances more than it affects government coffers.

Under Senate rules, each Democratic bill must have a significant impact on federal spending, revenue and debt. Democrats must show that any proposed policy changes still primarily affect the federal budget and are not just “side effects.”

Sen. Richard Burr (RN.C.), the top Republican on the Senate HELP Committee, said Wednesday that the insulin supply will be a challenge for the GOP.

Savings on prescription drugs

The Senate’s nonpartisan rules arbitrator has spent more than a week reviewing Democrats’ drug price plans. While provisions that would allow Medicare to negotiate higher drug costs appear unlikely to pass, Democrats’ push to punish drug companies when they raise prices for those with private health insurance is a bigger hurdle.

Savings from this mandate, which includes the private insurance market, could be considered a side effect of the policy rather than its primary purpose, as that would violate Senate budget rules. Some budget experts speculate that the measure has a chance to survive, but warn that no one has a crystal ball for the MP.

Limitations on electric vehicle credits

Some new provisions in the bill to allow for a $7,500 tax credit on electric car purchases may also be under consideration. Under the current offer, a full car credit is only available if the batteries were made using materials from the US or countries that have trade agreements with the US.

The requirements are designed to satisfy Sen. Joe Manchin ( DW.Va. ) worries that the electric car industry is too dependent on China. However, these conditions may once again raise the question of whether or not the policies being developed outweigh their impact on the federal budget.

Lease of state land for energy production

Another provision that Democrats may need to revise is a requirement that the Interior Department auction at least 2 million per year. acres of land for onshore oil and gas leases before allowing solar and wind energy projects on public lands.

Opponents of the proposal say its political impact outweighs its budgetary impact, as it makes solar and wind development on federal lands dependent on leases from oil producers.

Tighten the tax loophole

Democrats want to close a loophole that allows wealthy private equity and hedge fund managers to pay less in taxes, known as the carried interest provision. However, Arizona Sen. Christmas cinemathe only Democrat who has yet to sign the bill is seeking to eliminate that carryforward reduction as she weighs whether to approve the entire package.

In order for Democrats to pass their bill with a simple majority, senators must endure an all-night marathon of amendments known as a “vote of peace.” During that time frame, Republicans could propose an amendment to counter the carryover interest language and likely succeed in removing it, given a 50-50 Senate vote, as long as Sinema is on their side.

“We looked at it every which way,” Wyden said when asked about possible changes to win Sinema’s vote. “And any way you look at it, we’re saying something needs to change when multi-billion dollar corporations pay lower tax rates than nurses and firefighters.”

Josh Siegel contributed to this report.

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