Auf Druck der eigenen Partei: US-Präsident Biden stutzt Sozial- und Klimapaket massiv zusammen

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In der Demokratischen Partei von US-Präsident Joe Biden tobte die letzten Monate ein Streit über ein gigantisches Investitionspaket. Während Biden über 3 Billionen Dollar ausgeben wollte, drängten moderate Demokraten um eine Halbierung der Ausgaben.

Auf Druck der eigenen Partei: US-Präsident Biden stutzt Sozial- und Klimapaket massiv zusammen
© Bereitgestellt von Blick US-Präsident Biden stutzt Sozial- und Klimapaket massiv zusammen

Auf Druck aus Teilen seiner Partei hat US-Präsident Joe Biden sein geplantes Paket für Investitionen in Soziales und Klimaschutz dramatisch zusammengestrichen.

Vorgesehen seien Bidens Plänen nach nun Ausgaben von 1,75 Billionen US-Dollar, sagten hochrangige Mitarbeiter des Weissen Hauses am Donnerstag in Washington. Ursprünglich hatte Biden ein doppelt so grosses Paket im Umfang von 3,5 Billionen Dollar angepeilt.

Moderate Demokraten hatten sich jedoch gegen derart hohe Ausgaben gesperrt und den Präsidenten in monatelangen Verhandlungen gezwungen, sich von Teilen seiner Pläne zu verabschieden. Vor allem die beiden demokratischen US-Senatoren Joe Manchin (74) und Kyrsten Sinema (45) blockieren Bidens Reformpläne. Das Paket gehört zu den innenpolitischen Kernvorhaben seiner Präsidentschaft.

Hoffnung auf Mehrheiten

Die Mitarbeiter des Weissen Hauses äusserten sich zuversichtlich, dass in beiden Kongresskammern für das abgespeckte Paket nun die nötigen Mehrheiten zustande kämen. Eine offizielle Einigung mit den unterschiedlichen Parteiflügeln der Demokraten gab es zunächst nicht. Biden besuchte am Donnerstag eigens die demokratische Fraktion des Repräsentantenhauses, um dort persönlich für Zustimmung zu dem Kompromisspaket zu werben. Derlei Besuche des Präsidenten im Kongress sind selten.

Nach dem Besuch im Kongress wollte sich Biden am Donnerstag auch öffentlich zu seinen Plänen äussern – unmittelbar vor seiner Abreise nach Europa, wo er in den kommenden Tagen unter anderem am G20-Gipfel in Rom und der Weltklimakonferenz in Glasgow teilnehmen wird. Auch beim G20-Treffen dürfte der Klimaschutz eine wichtige Rolle spielen. Biden und das Weisse Haus hatten daher in den vergangenen Tagen ihre Bemühungen intensiviert, vor dem Europa-Trip eine Einigung zu dem Sozial- und Klimapaket zu erzielen, um international etwas vorweisen zu können.

Steuererhöhung für Konzerne

In dem 1,75-Billionen-Paket sind unter anderem 555 Milliarden Dollar an Investitionen im Kampf gegen die Klimakrise eingeplant, darunter Investitionen in erneuerbare Energien oder Steueranreize für den Kauf von Elektroautos. Herzstück des Pakets ist allerdings Soziales: Geplant ist unter anderem, die – bislang mitunter horrenden –Kosten für Kinderbetreuung für viele Familien im Land zu reduzieren und teils ganz durch den Staat zu übernehmen, Familien steuerlich zu entlasten und Gesundheitsleistungen auszubauen.

Finanziert werden soll das Paket durch Steuererhöhungen für Konzerne und Spitzenverdiener sowie durch das konsequentere Eintreiben fälliger Abgaben. Das Weisse Haus rechnet mit rund 2 Billionen Dollar an neuen Einnahmen – also etwas mehr als die Kosten des Pakets.

Diverse Pläne, die Biden ursprünglich in dem Paket vorgesehen hatte, fielen heraus, darunter sein bedeutsames Vorhaben, zwölf Wochen bezahlter Elternzeit einzuführen, ebenso weitere Verbesserungen bei der Gesundheitsversorgung. Dies sind Dinge, die progressiven Demokraten besonders am Herzen liegen. Als Druckmittel hatten sie damit gedroht, ein ebenfalls von Biden angestossenes, gross angelegtes Infrastrukturpaket zu blockieren, das vom Senat bereits beschlossen ist, aber noch die Zustimmung des Repräsentantenhauses braucht.

550 Milliarden Dollar für die Infrastruktur

Mit diesem Paket soll die Infrastruktur des Landes modernisiert werden. Vorgesehen sind über die nächsten Jahre verteilt rund 550 Milliarden US-Dollar an neuen Investitionen. Insgesamt – inklusive schon vorher veranschlagter Mittel – hat dieses Paket einen Umfang von mehr als einer Billion Dollar.

Die beiden Pakete sind zentrale innenpolitische Projekte für Biden in seiner Amtszeit – und angesichts der innerparteilichen Kämpfe bei den Demokraten politisch miteinander verknüpft. Bidens Demokraten haben in beiden Kongresskammern nur sehr knappe Mehrheiten, daher muss der Präsident die eigenen Reihen schliessen.

Angesichts der nahenden Kongresswahlen im kommenden Jahr, zur Halbzeit seiner Amtszeit, drängt generell die Zeit für Biden, seine Kernanliegen durchzusetzen, solange die Demokraten noch das Sagen im Kongress haben. Zumindest im Senat droht der Verlust der Mehrheit bei der Wahl 2022. (SDA)

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