Written by Juan Sebastian Fragozo
The Biden-Harris Administration selected Pete Buttigieg to serve as Transportation Secretary. In accordance with the Administration’s “Build Back Better” slogan, he has ideas to reinvent the nation’s infrastructure. The changes are expected to cost in the trillions, and with the country being in an enormous amount of debt, the Biden Administration needs a way to pay for it. With that comes their latest proposal, a mileage tax, which will tax American’s based on how many miles they drive.
A milage tax looks “promising,” said Secretary Buttigieg.
The country is already suffering from the ongoing pandemic, increased unemployment, and economic difficulties. With the cancelation of the Keystone XL Pipeline and other future projects, gas in the United States has gone up, and now the government is planning to tax even more.
In Secretary Buttigieg’s words “The gas tax used to be the obvious way to do it; it’s not anymore.” He also added, “So, a so-called vehicle miles traveled tax or a mileage tax, whatever you want to call it, could be the way to do it.” The specifics on how the tax will be paid were completely avoided by the secretary, but the idea is still there, he wants the American people to pay for the roads based on how much they drive.
As with many other reckless ideas, this one is not taking into account the impact it will have on the transportation industry, not to mention the pockets of everyday Americans that already pay a state and federal fuel tax. Truckers pay thousands of dollars a year in taxes per truck, adding to their financial burden is not a way to generate revenue to fix the country’s infrastructure, but it certainly is a way to drive small transportation businesses to bankruptcy.
And to make the situation even worse, Democrats have proposed passing the infrastructure bill through a Senate process called budget reconciliation. By doing this, they could pass legislation with a simple majority, rather than needing to get 10 Republican Senators to vote with them. They recently used this process to pass the $1.9T “American Rescue Plan,” which received no Republican support. Typically this process can only be used once per fiscal year, but Democrats are planning to use it a total of 2 or even 3 times this year, throwing the rules and decades of precedent out the window.
It becomes more clear each day that Biden’s promises of unity and working across the aisle hold absolutely no weight. From passing over 40 executive orders in only his first days in office, to allowing migrants to flood the country, and now looking to ram a partisan infrastructure bill through congress, the Biden Administration has been one of the least bipartisan and most radical administrations in American history.
Photo by Stefani Reynolds / Bloomberg