17 Nobel Prize-winning economists sign letter endorsing Biden’s $3.5 trillion 'human infrastructure' plan

17 Nobel Prize-winning economists sign letter endorsing Biden’s $3.5 trillion 'human infrastructure' plan

It remains to be seen whether or not President Joe Biden's $3.5 trillion "human infrastructure" plan — which includes federal funding for health care, education, child care and combating climate change — will ultimately make it to his desk to be signed into law. The $3.5 trillion price tag is drawing resistance from Republicans as well as centrist Democrats like Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Sen. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona. But 17 economists, all Nobel Prize recipients, have signed a letter endorsing the plan, which members of the Biden Administration see as crucial to his Build Back Better agenda.

The economists, reporter Nicole Goodkind notes in Fortune, also "came out in support of a proposed $2.9 trillion increase in taxes to pay for the program." The tax hikes, according to Goodkind, would "mostly impact the wealthiest Americans and large, multinational corporations."

The economists wrote, "While we all have different views on the particulars of various economic policies, we believe that key components of this broader agenda are critical — including tax reforms that make our tax system more equitable and that enable our system to raise the additional funds required to facilitate necessary public investments and achieve our collective goals. Because this agenda invests in long-term economic capacity and will enhance the ability of more Americans to participate productively in the economy, it will ease longer-term inflationary pressures."

The economists who signed the letter include Joseph Stiglitz, Peter Diamond, George Akerlof (who is married to Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen), Sir Angus Deaton, Christopher Sims, Robert Engle, Edmund S. Phelps, Oliver Hart, Robert Solow, Daniel Kahneman, Eric S. Maskin, Paul Milgrom, Daniel McFadden, Paul Romer, Roger Myerson, William Sharpe and Robert Shiller.

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