WASHINGTON — President Biden signed into law a landmark tax, health and energy bill on Tuesday that takes significant steps toward fulfilling his goal to modernize the American economy and reduce its dependence on fossil fuels.
The vast legislation will lower prescription drug costs for seniors on Medicare, extend federal subsidies for health insurance and reduce the federal deficit. It will also help electric utilities switch to lower-emission sources of energy and encourage Americans to buy electric vehicles through tax credits.
What it does not do, however, is provide workers with many of the other sweeping economic changes that Mr. Biden pledged would help Americans earn more and enjoy the comforts of a middle-class life.
Mr. Biden signed the bill, which Democrats call the Inflation Reduction Act, in the State Dining Room at the White House. He and his allies cast the success of the legislation as little short of a miracle, given it required more than a year of intense negotiations among congressional Democrats. In his remarks, Mr. Biden proclaimed victory as he signed a compromise bill that he called “the biggest step forward on climate ever” and “a godsend to many families” struggling with prescription drug costs.
“The bill I’m about to sign is not just about today; it’s about tomorrow. It’s about delivering progress and prosperity to American families,” Mr. Biden said.
Administration officials say Mr. Biden has passed far more of his economic agenda than they could have possibly hoped for, given Republican opposition to much of his agenda on taxes and spending and razor-thin Democratic majorities in the House and Senate. His wins include a $1.9 trillion economic rescue plan last year designed to get workers and businesses through the pandemic and a pair of bipartisan bills at American competitiveness: a $1 trillion infrastructure