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Biden: Reversing Inflation ‘Top Priority’ After Consumer Report Shows Climbing Prices

By News Creatives Authors , in Business , at November 10, 2021

Topline

President Joe Biden responded to the Consumer Price Index report Wednesday, which showed U.S. consumer prices had their largest surge in more than 30 years, saying there is “more work to do before our economy is back to normal,” and using the opportunity to urge lawmakers to pass his Build Back Better plan.

Key Facts

Biden said in a statement that reversing the trend of inflation increasing 0.9% over the past month is a “top priority,” but argued there is “no question” that the economy is in “better shape than it was a year ago.

Biden said he has directed the National Economic Council to find ways to reduce energy costs, which accounted for the largest share of the rising costs, according to the report.

He also asked the Federal Trade Commission to “strike back” at market manipulation or price gouging in the energy sector.

The recently passed Infrastructure Bill will bring down costs by making certain goods more available and less costly—easing supply chain issues, according to Biden.

He urged Congress to pass his Build Back Better plan, arguing that it will lower costs for health care and prescription drugs and will cut taxes for 50 million Americans.

Big Number

6.2%. That’s how much inflation has increased in the past 12 months, according to the Consumer Price Index report.

Chief Critic

Republicans have honed in on inflation concerns, and some have argued that Biden’s plan will make the problem worse. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said earlier this month that inflation is a “direct result of flooding the country with money,” adding that Biden’s plan would add “another massive, reckless tax and spending spree.” House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) echoed a similar sentiment in a tweet Wednesday, saying that the Build Back Better plan will spend “trillions that will only make this crisis worse.” Rep. Jim Banks (R-Ind.) wrote in a memo that focusing on inflation and supply chain issues is “hitting home with voters,” and referenced the results of the Virginia gubernatorial election. “We need to keep hammering away and work on bringing solutions to the table to address their concerns,” he wrote.

Crucial Quote

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) said in a tweet “the threat posed by record inflation to the American people is not ‘transitory’ and is instead getting worse.” Manchin has been one of the major holdouts on passing Biden’s Build Back Better plan, first saying the $3.5 trillion price tag was too much, and last week adding that he needed more time to evaluate the lowered proposed cost of $1.75 trillion. Manchin added that Washington can “no longer ignore the economic pain Americans feel every day.”

Surprising Fact

More than two-thirds of Americans said inflation is a “very big concern,” outpacing worries on Covid-19, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll released last week.

Further Reading

‘Meatflation’ Worsens As Beef Prices Hit Steepest Rise In 30 Years (Forbes)

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