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White House economic adviser pressed on budget pledge: 'Is inflation not a tax on families?'

executive National Economic Council Director executive was pressed Wednesday over President Biden’s verbal pledge not to raise taxes on working-class families and those earning up to $400,000 per year.

Deese, a former BlackRock executive, defended the budget proposal and reiterated the left’s long-held belief that the wealthiest Americans do not pay their proverbial fair share.

Deese told “fox-news-flash” target=”_blank”>America Reports< that the federal deficit had increased every year under the Trump administration and that Biden’s plan intends to reduce the deficit.

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FILE PHOTO: White House senior advisor Brian Deese (L) walks with U.S. Special Envoy for Climate Change Todd Stern (R)

FILE PHOTO: White House senior advisor Brian Deese (L) walks with U.S. Special Envoy for Climate Change Todd Stern (R)
(Reuters)

Roberts followed up by asking if Deese could make that same claim if Democrats – save for Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia – had succeeded in passing the multi-trillion-dollar “Build Back Better” spending package.

“The funny thing about that – we’ve talked about previously is that the elements of that plan are fully paid for, and that’s a very different issue when you’re talking macroeconomics about what the impact would be on the economy and on inflation,” Deese said.

“When you offset an investment, by reducing spending or by increasing revenue, then you aren’t having an impact on [it].”

Co-host fox-news-flash” target=”_blank”>Sandra Smith<, and pointing out that President Rob Kapito recently warned the new “entitled generation” that it should brace for shortages and higher inflation.

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President Joe Biden

President Joe Biden
(AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Smith reported that the average American family will be spending $5,200 more this year due to inflation and related costs.

“Brian, you and your administration, President Biden, continue to say that there will be no tax hikes on people in this country making less than $400,000 a year,” she said. “Even Larry Summers, a former economist under the Obama administration, says this is a tax on the American hard-working consumer. Your response?”

Deese replied that Biden has been “very clear” about not enacting explicit tax hikes on families before Smith pressed again.

“The inflation number I just put on the screen. Is that not a tax on a hard-working American family?”

Deese then responded that inflation “is a problem” and that he and Biden are trying to address it by “lowering the costs that people face [like on] prescription drugs…”

In response, Roberts asked how Deese and Biden are working to bring down gas prices, which have been a major inflationary pain.

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Americans are experiencing the highest gas prices since the 2008 financial crisis.

Americans are experiencing the highest gas prices since the 2008 financial crisis.
(Getty Images)

Earlier this year, Biden’s energy secretary, Jennifer Granholm, loudly guffawed when asked what the White House is doing to combat rising gas prices.

Deese said the U.S. needs to increase the oil supply, blaming the imposition of a Russian oil ban as part of the cause, before adding that oil companies plan to bring more wells online that were shuttered during the pandemic.

“What we’re doing is working on how we can use our reserves, our national assets to help bridge that gap and also working internationally with other oil-producing countries as well,” he said. 

“There is a clear difference here. President Biden believes we should be taking active steps to lower costs for families on things like prescription drugs and health care. And that does stand in contrast to the Republicans’ approach.”

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