The proposed 2023 budget for the Department of Health and Human Services will allow the government to make needed investments in education and health, including for the next pandemic to come after COVID-19, Secretary Xavier Becerra said on Tuesday.
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“The budget advances equity and helps ensure our programs serve people of color and other underserved communities with the opportunities promised to all Americans,” Becerra said in his prepared remarks to the Senate Finance Committee.
Becerra said the budget asks for $127.3 billion in discretionary and $1.7 trillion in mandatory budget authority.
“These investments support families through early education, behavioral health, and access to care,” said Becerra.
Biden announced a budget blueprint last week that calls for higher taxes on the wealthy, lower federal deficits, more money for police and greater funding for education, public health and housing.
Appearing at the White House with Young on Monday, Biden said the proposal sends a clear message to the public about “what we value.” He outlined a focus on fiscal responsibility, safety and security and investments to “build a better America.”
The document essentially tries to tell voters what a diverse and at times fractured Democratic Party stands for ahead of the midterm elections that could decide whether Congress remains under the party’s control.
Biden is proposing a total of $5.8 trillion in federal spending in fiscal 2023, which begins in October, slightly less than what was projected to be spent this year before the supplemental spending bill was signed into law this month. The deficit would be $1.15 trillion.