By Trang Do

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — As President-elect Joe Biden meets with his transition team to prepare for the White House, the non-partisan Penn Wharton Budget Model is sharing some insight into the possible short-term and long-term economic effects of a Biden administration. The model, which PWBM Director of Policy Analysis Rich Prisinzano describes as an elaborate tax calculator, projects that the vast majority of the population will not be affected by Biden’s proposed tax increases — just the wealthiest Americans.

“The minimum amount that you’d have to make to face any of these increases would be $400,000 in wages and that group is in the top 5% of the income distribution,” he said.

Though lower-income Americans wouldn’t see their taxes impacted, Prisinzano said some would see benefits through other aid programs.

“Expanded Earned Income Tax Credit, expanded Child Tax Credit, some of the spending programs, like free college for those under 125 [thousand dollars],” he said.

The model shows that changes to the country’s immigration policies would affect the economy positively, some almost immediately, by reinstating the number of highly skilled foreign workers permitted to work in the U.S. on H1-B visas — a program which was slashed under the Trump administration. Other changes, such as creating a legal pathway to citizenship for the undocumented, would take years to make an impact.

Finally, addressing the catastrophic effects of the pandemic, these researchers say any kind of stimulus should not wait for the new administration.

“Stimulus now is better than stimulus later, the flavor of how that is built in is an open question, but it should be now rather than later,” Prisinzano said.

You can read more of the PWBM analysis here.


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