Despite polls showing popular support for the economic legislation passed last year, Rep. Andy Ogles and over 20 Republicans are seeking to reverse it completely.
A new Navigator poll released on Thursday indicates that the vast majority of American voters support the Inflation Reduction Act. The legislation, passed by Democratic majorities in Congress and signed by President Joe Biden in August 2022, contains historic investments in health care, climate change, and deficit reduction measures.
Despite the law's popularity, 23 House Republicans are pushing to repeal it as co-sponsors of the Inflation Reduction Act of 2023.
The Navigator survey, conducted in late February, asked 1,000 registered voters whether they supported the law, which it said "will give Medicare the power to negotiate lower drug prices, bring down health insurance premiums, and invest in clean energy like wind and solar power."
Sixty-eight percent of all respondents said they did, 23% said they did not, and 9% said they were not sure. Among Republicans, 43% backed the law and 46% opposed it.
The legislation includes $369 billion for new energy and climate change infrastructure funding, $64 billion to fund a three-year extension of health insurance subsidies through the Affordable Care Act (commonly known as Obamacare), and $71 billion to help the Internal Revenue Service modernize operations and crack down on wealthy tax cheats over a period of 10 years.
The Congressional Budget Office predicted that the Inflation Reduction Act would decrease the federal budget deficit by $238 billion over a decade. Democrats in Congress estimated that total to be more than $300 billion.
Rep. Andy Ogles (R-TN) introduced the Inflation Reduction Act of 2023 on Feb. 2, saying in a statement that cited information from right-wing organizations such as the Heritage Foundation and the America First Policy Institute that it "would reduce inflation" by repealing the 2022 law.
To date, 22 of Ogles' colleagues — all Republicans — have signed on as co-sponsors, including Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz, Texas Rep. Chip Roy, and New York Rep. George Santos. Their seven-line proposed bill would repeal the 2022 legislation and rescind any amounts under the law that are not yet obligated.
Ogles is a first-term lawmaker whose claim to be a "trained economist" in his official biography was challenged when Nashville TV station WTVF published college transcripts showing he'd taken only one economics course. He issued a statement on Feb. 26 apologizing and justifying other false claims about his college degree: "I previously stated that my degree from MTSU was in International Relations. When I pulled my transcript to verify, I realized I was mistaken. My degree is in Liberal Studies. I apologize for my misstatement."
Positive impacts of the Inflation Reduction Act signed by President Biden have already been reported across the country.
In West Virginia, two new manufacturing plants have been announced, thanks in part to funding from the law, resulting in 2,750 new jobs.
Tax credits in the legislation for purchasers of electric vehicles, combined with lowered prices offered by manufacturers, will make the cars more affordable to consumers.
On Wednesday, insulin manufacturer Eli Lilly announced it would cap the out-of-pocket cost of its insulin at $35 a month for everyone, in line with the law's cap for Medicare beneficiaries.
Despite making inflation a major 2022 campaign issue, House Republicans did not advance any legislation in their first six weeks in the majority to actually address the issue.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.