In both South Carolina and Colorado, where we are from, respectively, we know that there are legislative wins, and then there are WINS — those rare moments where one knows they’ll be looking back generations from now, proud that policymakers had the foresight and commitment to stand up and build a brighter future for our children and grandchildren.
There are victories where we celebrate solving a problem, and then there are those victories where we celebrate moving a mountain.
Today, we want to discuss the latter.
On August 16, 2023, we’ll join many in marking the one-year anniversary of President Joe Biden putting pen to paper and signing one of the most transformative and beneficial laws of our time: The Inflation Reduction Act.
Now, we could detail the many economic and health-care provisions of the Inflation Reduction Act making an impact across the country, from capping prescription drug prices to forcing those corporations that have spent years paying little to nothing in taxes to finally pay their fair share, with a 15% corporate tax minimum. We could mention the legislation’s provisions that enable Medicare to negotiate prescription drug prices and limit out-of-pocket prescription drug costs for Medicare beneficiaries — policies supported by 72% of Americans.
But we want to emphasize today the law’s impact on one of the most pressing challenges of our time — the climate crisis.
Because, truth be told, the bill isn’t just landmark legislation. It is the largest investment to fight the climate crisis in the history of the world. It’s a haymaker that connects just when we need it most—with this past June being the hottest on record. As climate change-induced disasters continue to inflict terrible damage to communities across the country, from worsening deadly tornadoes and flooding to more extreme wildfires, and record-breaking heat killing hundreds of people, the time for climate action is now. Americans understand well the cost of the climate crisis, because they are living through it daily.
That is why the Inflation Reduction Act is so crucial. From $60 billion in new incentives for clean energy manufacturing, prompting a massive new investment in clean energy manufacturing with nearly 80 major new facilities, to $369 billion in climate and clean energy programs over the next 10 years, it is a law that finally takes the climate crisis seriously. Families across the country are now eligible for expanded tax credits for high-efficiency heat pumps and electric cars, as well as a new tax credit for solar panel installation, giving every day Americans a 30% discount while reducing our power bills. And all in all, the law will help cut carbon emissions by 40% by 2030 and from 99 million to 193 million metric tons per year between 2030 and 2050.
Simply put, in just one year, the Inflation Reduction Act has charted a new way forward for us, our children and generations to come.
Now, the American people understand that the historic benefits outlined above never would have happened, if not for President Biden and Congressional Democrats standing up to make a difference, not just for today, but for tomorrow too. However, while it is not lost on us that every single congressional Republican voted against the bill, we’re proud to celebrate the many ways in which the law will benefit their communities and their constituents, too.
Indeed, August 16th is a day to celebrate the impact of this historic law for all Americans, irrespective of party. From lowering prescription drug costs to historic climate action, President Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act is a big win for the country, and in the words of that modern-day hip-hop philosopher DJ Khaled—all he did was win, win, win no matter what, on behalf of the American people.
We’re grateful for his efforts.
Congressman Joe Neguse represents Colorado’s 2nd Congressional District and is the Chairman of the Democratic Policy and Communications Committee.
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