Wrapping up his participation in the Group of Seven (G7) summit in Hiroshima, Japan, President Joe Biden criticized Republican lawmakers whom his administration is negotiating a new budget with. He singled out “wealthy tax cheats and crypto traders” as beneficiaries whom he felt did not deserve the benefits they received.
Failing to reach a budget agreement could lead to the U.S. government defaulting on its debt payments on June 1.
During the closing press conference, Biden announced that his proposed budget reduces spending by over one trillion dollars, adding to the deficit reductions of nearly $3 trillion already proposed by his administration through spending cuts and generating new revenue.
Before his departure, Biden met with all four congressional leaders. They acknowledged the importance of reaching a bipartisan agreement for progress. However, the president urged the opposing side to move away from their extreme positions, as he found many of their proposals unacceptable.
In particular, Biden highlighted the differing preferences of Republicans and Democrats, expressing his unwillingness to agree to a deal that protects tax evaders and crypto traders while jeopardizing food assistance.
“Let me be clear, I’m not going to agree to… a deal that protects wealthy tax cheats and crypto traders while putting food assistance at risk for nearly 1 million Americans,” Biden said.
One point of contention in the budget negotiations is the treatment of tax-loss harvesting for cryptocurrency transactions. Tax-loss harvesting involves selling a cryptocurrency at a loss to offset capital gains, and it requires reinvesting the proceeds within 30 days in a similar asset to qualify for claiming the loss.
The 46th U.S. president also criticized other objectionable trade-offs, such as granting the oil industry $30 billion in tax benefits and allocating $200 billion in “excessive payments” to the pharmaceutical industry instead of prioritizing Medicaid and job preservation for 100,000 school teachers or 30,000 law enforcement officers.
“I’ve done my part… now it’s time for the other side to move there from their extreme positions, because much of what they’ve already proposed is simply, quite frankly, unacceptable.”
Joe Biden, current President of the United States
The 80-year-old president emphasized that Republicans must understand and accept that a bipartisan agreement cannot be reached solely on their partisan terms. This statement mirrored a sequence of Twitter messages from earlier this month, in which he presented a series of choices between different options.
These posts asserted that “MAGA House Republicans” endorse “tax loopholes that help wealthy crypto investors” while opposing inspections to ensure food safety.
Biden’s $6.9 billion budget plan emphasizes the importance of regulatory updates for digital assets, including implementing wash sale rules and addressing transactions involving related parties. The objective is to establish a regulatory framework that treats crypto assets in a manner consistent with traditional investments.
Tax on cryptocurrency mining
The White House, under Biden’s administration, has advocated for a 30 percent excise tax on the expenses associated with electricity used for cryptocurrency mining. However, some lawmakers argue that the proposal will unlikely gain support or traction.
It was reported by the Washington Post that Biden and House Speaker Kevin McCarthy had reached an agreement to resume negotiations, aiming to avert the looming “economic catastrophe” that could occur within a mere 11-day timeframe.
Biden highlighted the importance of avoiding default and underlined that it is not feasible. He further stressed that negotiations would resume while he is in transit back to the U.S.
Throughout history, America has consistently upheld its commitment to never default on debt. Biden reiterated the nation’s determination to maintain this record in the future.