False Advertising for the Inflation Reduction Act
Listen to US President Joe Biden and other proponents of the recently signed Inflation Reduction Act, and you would think that America has single-handedly rescued the world from inflation, climate change, and corporate greed. Unfortunately, all of the law's big promises shrivel under scrutiny.
STANFORD – US President Joe Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) contains a variety of provisions focused on subsidizing renewable energy and health insurance, and taxing corporations and the wealthy. It is the product of a contentious year-long intraparty struggle, following Senators Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema’s refusal to go along with Biden’s multi-trillion-dollar “Build Back Better” bill.
Though that sprawling “progressive” wish list didn’t make it, the IRA nonetheless has stoked elation on the left. The headline on a recent New York Times column goes so far as to ask, “Did Democrats Just Save Civilization?,” and Biden himself has described the legislation as “one of the most significant laws in our history.”
While hyperbole is nothing new for a US president (Donald Trump engaged in the practice daily on Twitter), the marketing of the IRA has crossed a red line. By claiming that the law will reduce inflation, benefit the climate, and tax only the rich and big corporations, the Democrats have engaged in the kind of false advertising that would be illegal for a private company.