Big Tent Ideas

PETER ROFF: Congress’ $1.7 Trillion Monstrosity Was Flown In For Biden To Sign While On Vacation. Another Insult To Taxpayers

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Peter Roff A former UPI political writer and U.S. News and World Report columnist, Peter Roff is a Trans-Atlantic Leadership Network media fellow. Contact him at RoffColumns AT and follow him on Twitter @TheRoffDraft.
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Joe Biden’s been president for just about two years. In that time, the U.S. government has spent more money than under any other chief executive in U.S. history.

That, one could suppose, might lead him to conclude he has not just the right but the responsibility to tell the rest of us how we should live our lives. It’s a hallmark of modern liberalism to lead by lecture, not by example. (RELATED: VERONIQUE DE RUGY: A Path To Fiscal Sanity Has Been Revealed To Congress. Will It Listen?)

It’s worth pointing out because the Biden administration, like so many that have come before, would much prefer we listen to what they say versus watching what they do. That’s because their judgment, like their ideas about public policy, is seriously impaired.

Just the other day, while vacationing in the U.S. Virgin Islands the president took time out of his busy schedule to affix his signature to the $1.7 trillion, pork-laden Omnibus spending measure into law. It made for a nice photo op.

What was buried in most of the reporting, probably because it didn’t occur to anyone how outrageous it was, was that the 4,000-page legislation package had been flown to St. Croix by the White House so he could sign it before the government ran out of money.

To say this was poor planning is only the tip of the iceberg. It would be interesting to know more about how the legislation got there. Was it couriered there in a briefcase or two handcuffed to the wrists of White House aides? Was it shipped via Federal Express or another of the overnight delivery services? Or did the U.S. Postal Service handle the job?

It’s not cheap to ship 4,000 pages outside the continental United States and back and the U.S. is, sad to say, more or less broke. Interest payments on the federal debt are up by about $2.5 trillion since Biden took office.

The American Rescue Plan accounts for another $1.9 trillion in spending which, when added to the $745 billion Inflation Reduction Act, the $625 billion Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, and what the Republicans on the House Budget Committee estimate to be something over $1 trillion in new spending resulting from the president’s executive actions, the new debt is about half of total U.S. GDP.

It might be different if he’d taken it with him when he traveled, but if he could do that, he could have signed it before he left Washington. Whatever happened, he might have received the legislation, but the taxpayers are the ones who got the bill.

How it got there matters too. Remember, Biden is surrounded by people like former Secretary of State John Kerry (and former nominee for Gulfstream’s Traveler of the Year) who keep telling us that global climate change is probably the biggest threat to the continued existence of humankind. Yet, knowing the U.S. government, however it got to the island it was probably by private jet, ostensibly for reasons of security. That’s not very climate conscious.

It may seem like a small thing, but it isn’t. It’s a perfect example of the “do as I say not as I do” approach to policymaking that has kept the liberals out of power for so long. It’s annoying, and they’re either tone-deaf, stupid, or (and this is my pick) they just don’t care.

It’s why they lose so many elections. They can’t think outside the box and they can’t get outside their social bubble so when they do manage to win one, they have so much trouble governing.

A former UPI senior political writer and U.S. News and World Report columnist, Peter Roff is a senior fellow at several public policy organizations including the Trans-Atlantic Leadership Network. Contact him at RoffColumns AT Follow him on Twitter and TruthSocial @TheRoffDraft.

The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of the Daily Caller News Foundation.

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