Should former Vice President Joe Biden win the presidential election in November, will he serve out his full four-year term? There has been a lot of speculation in conservative media that Biden could step down before his first term is up due to his cognitive or physical health. This would result in Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) becoming the next U.S. president. Harris was candid during her presidential bid that she would use the power of the executive branch to get what she wants if Congress failed to act. Since the possibility of her becoming the 47th president is high, it would be essential to explore her economic policies.
The Economics of Kamala Harris
Despite the mainstream media’s recent claim that Harris is a moderate, her economic agenda and votes suggest that she leans heavily to the left. Harris went as far as describing herself as a progressive in an interview during primary season.
The senator opposed President Donald Trump’s Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) of 2017, and later demanded the repeal of the legislation’s tax cuts for wealthy Americans.
Harris has endorsed a Medicare for All plan, as well as supporting Senator Bernie Sanders’ (I-VT) bill. However, throughout the primaries, she shifted the proposal to keep private insurance, which did not go over well with Democrat voters.
Her positions on trade have been vague, using generic language about protecting American jobs and workers. Harris said in September 2019 that she is “not a protectionist Democrat,” and she has been critical of the president’s trade war with China. Harris said she would not have voted for the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) in the early 1990s, and she voted against the USMCA (the revised NAFTA deal). What would she do differently? The only thing Harris has alluded to is having “a meaningful trade policy.”
With that, Harris was given a 100% rating from the AFL-CIO.
In April, Harris and Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) introduced the Price Gouging Prevention Act. This was legislation that would enhance the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) power to enforce a ban on price hikes of consumer goods during national emergencies. The bill considered anything above 10% to be price gouging.
In July 2019, Harris proposed a $100 billion housing strategy to help four million households who rent or live in historically red-lined communities. These are areas that have been denied a wide variety of services because of race. She also suggested giving them a $25,000 down payment and closing cost assistance. Harris wanted to issue a nationwide mandate to adjust how credit scores are calculated, arguing that it would boost minorities’ access to credit markets.
Before the primary debates started, her campaign released a plan that would mandate businesses to apply for a written document from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) that certifies their company pays men and women the same. If firms failed to receive certification, they would pay fines of 1% of earnings for every 1% of the difference in pay. It was an awkward idea because her Senate office and campaign had a gender pay gap, which would have resulted in a 6% fine.
What Defines Kamala Harris?
Economics does not define Harris’ political career. It is difficult to pinpoint what Harris stands for, except for a plethora of platitudes that pander to the progressive woke crowd with empty rhetoric – environmental or social justice, for example. But she does hit the intersectional checkboxes: female, black, and leftist. If you need to summarize the senator’s stance on the economy, here is something to use: Spend a bunch of money on a problem.