Biden Touts Plan for Federal Spending on Child and Elder Care

Democratic presidential candidate and former Vice President Joe Biden. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

(CN) — Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden unveiled the third plank of his economic agenda Tuesday, saying the country needs to invest more in caregiving for the young and old to unleash the full power of the American economy. 

“This is about easing the squeeze on working families who are caring for their kids and taking care of their aged parents sometimes at the same time,” Biden said during a speech at a preschool in New Castle, Delaware. 

Biden used the event to try and expand his appeal to the working class, as the Democrats attempt to win back many of the members of the working class who switched their vote from Obama to then-candidate Donald Trump in 2016.

Biden said the current coronavirus pandemic has highlighted the integral role of child care and elder care plays in society, and that after the public health crisis subsides the federal government should invest in supporting such caregiving. 

“This is both a moral and economic imperative,” Biden said. 

Biden’s plan calls for federal spending of approximately $775 billion over 10 years, paid for by rolling back tax breaks for real estate developers who make more than $400,000 while increasing tax compliance. 

The presumptive nominee also called for the construction of child care facilities throughout the country while using sliding-scale subsidies to help parents pay for child-care while offering universal preschool for three- and four-year-olds. 

Biden’s plan also calls for a renewed focus on rewarding senior caregivers and child care providers with higher-paying jobs and the opportunity to join a union with more worker protections. 

The Trump campaign slammed Biden’s plan Tuesday, saying it calls for higher federal spending which means higher taxes for middle-class families. 

“Biden is proposing yet another nearly $800 billion in federal spending disguised as an economic plan, on top of the $2 trillion spending he proposed just last week — all while purposefully killing millions of good-paying union jobs and then demanding middle-class Americans foot the bill,” the Trump campaign said in a statement.

The Trump campaign has repeatedly accused Biden of stealing their talking points as it relates to making overtures to the working class, but Trump has largely abandoned his working-class appeals and has instead leaned hard into the culture war in recent weeks while posturing as a law and order candidate. 

Meanwhile, Biden has unveiled his three-plank plan to “build back better”, which involves rebuilding American infrastructure, bringing back critical supply chains to American shores, investing in a renewable energy grid while focusing federal support on caregiving for children and elders. 

Biden also sharpened his attack on Trump’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic. 

“He has quit on you and quit on this country,” Biden said. 

The former vice president said Trump continues to fail in understanding that the key to getting America back to work is to develop and follow a plan to address the public health crisis. 

“Too many American workers are out of work and waiting to get back,” Biden said. 

The Trump campaign has been critical of Biden’s refusal to take questions from the press at his campaign events. And while Biden did not take questions while at the Colwyck Center in New Castle, he pledged to do so in the future. 

The Trump campaign has also been critical of the low profile Biden has kept as he typically limits his appearances to once a week. 

But many Democratic strategists continue to encourage Biden to lay low in order to make the upcoming election more of a referendum on Trump and his performance as president, rather than a binary choice between two candidates. 

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