If Assessed in the Same Manner as the Build Back Better Act, President Trump’s Tax Cut for the Wealthy Would Have Been Characterized as a $5 Trillion+ Package — Not $2 Trillion

Washington Post Columnist Catherine Rampell: “The $3.5 trillion headline refers to only one side of the ledger.”

Characterizing the Build Back Better Act as a $3.5 trillion spending plan is categorically misleading, according to an analysis from the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities. Read the full analysis here.

Here’s why describing the Build Back Better Act as a $3.5 trillion plan is hypocritical: 

President Trump’s tax cuts that overwhelmingly benefitted the wealthiest Americans had a gross cost of over $5 trillion. 

  • The gross cost of the Trump tax cuts was about $5.5 trillion, according to the Joint Committee on Taxation.

However, media reports characterized Trump’s tax cuts by their net cost of $2 trillion — the figure that would ultimately be added to the debt.

Now, the same media reports are characterizing the Build Back Better Act by its gross cost of $3.5 trillion — ignoring the fact that the plan’s net cost is $0.  

Conclusion: If the media assessed the Build Back Better Act and its revenue offsets as  they did the Trump tax cuts, they would note that the cost is $0.