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Biden's $2.3 trillion jobs plan triggers hot debate

By HENG WEILI in New York | China Daily | Updated: 2021-04-08 08:09
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An expansion project is carried out at Los Angeles International Airport in the United States. [Photo provided to China Daily]

Sweeping proposal underscores sharp political divisions

United States President Joe Biden has recast what has traditionally been considered infrastructure with a $2.3 trillion plan that includes money for jobs programs and caregivers, in addition to bridges and highways.

However, the word "infrastructure" is not included in the sweeping proposal's title.

Called the American Jobs Plan, it also proposes spending billions of dollars on affordable housing, help for schools and labor unions and expanding high-speed internet services, among numerous other priorities.

In a nod to climate awareness, Biden's plan puts development of the electric vehicle industry ahead of any other transportation category. He also wants to spend $10 billion to create a Civilian Climate Corps.

"It's a once-in-a-generation investment in America unlike anything we've seen or done since we built the interstate highway system and the space race decades ago. In fact, it's the largest American jobs investment since World War II," Biden said on March 31 when he announced the plan in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

The largest single category of expenditure would be $400 billion toward "expanding access to quality, affordable home-or community-based care for aging relatives and people with disabilities", he said.

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