Sen. Joe Manchin should stay true to his word and prevent President Joe Biden's nearly $2 trillion spending bill from passing in the Senate, former Trump chief economist Larry Kudlow said Sunday during an appearance on "The Cats Roundtable" radio show hosted by John Catsimatidis on WABC 770AM.
There "is nothing good in this bill" and "I hope Manchin is good to his word, because he has said inflation is way too high and government spending will feed it, and we should pause until inflation starts coming down," said Kudlow.
He also emphasized that "the economy is in an inflationary blow-off stage," which means there should be "no spending bills at least until the second half of next year. Let’s have a pause for nine months and see what happens."
Kudlow also harshly criticized the bill for "some very nasty tax increases that will do great damage to small businesses and therefore employment and productivity" and pointed out that "the Democrats want a lot of new transfer payments [in the legislation], but you don’t have to work to get them. And that’s not a safety net, it’s just expanding welfare… which does a lot of damage to the economy."
He stressed that Manchin, a moderate Democrat from West Virginia, should "stay tough" and "kill the bill," because "Manchin… wants work requirements. He wants means tests. And he wants tough eligibility… I’m all for legal immigration, but I’m not for illegal immigration. In this bill there is a provision for almost unlimited welfare payments to illegal immigrants,” which Kudlow called "absolutely crazy" and a "terrible idea" that just rewards people who come here illegally.
With unified Republican opposition in the Senate, the Democrats need everyone in the party to back the legislation for it to pass, so Manchin has the ability to block it.
Kudlow also said the official scoring for the bill severely underestimates its true cost, because it treats the tax hike as only existing for a few years when they will actually stay around for much longer.
Kudlow said "the University of Pennsylvania Wharton model and the committee for responsible federal budget model says it’s a $5 trillion spending bill, and I think that’s exactly fair."
He was also optimistic about Republican prospects for next year’s midterm elections, saying that House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy should not be underestimated.
"He’s a very strong player. He’s a hard worker. And he is going to make a great Speaker when the Republicans win 50 or 60 seats next year and retake the House," Kudlow said.
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