Buttigieg: 'Just Making Child Care More Affordable Is Going to Help With Inflation'

By Susan Jones | November 1, 2021 | 5:23am EDT
President Joe Biden greets children at the Capitol Child Development Center in Hartford, Connecticut, on October 15, 2021. (Photo by BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images)
President Joe Biden greets children at the Capitol Child Development Center in Hartford, Connecticut, on October 15, 2021. (Photo by BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images)

(CNSNews.com) - "We'll have better tools for fighting inflation if we pass this economic package," Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg told "Fox News Sunday." He said one of those tools is taxpayer-subsidized child care.

Democrats may (or may not be) close to passing both a bipartisan infrastructure bill and a so-called "human" infrastructure bill, which creates new entitlement programs that put "money directly in the pockets of the Americans who know best how to spend it for their families," Buttigieg said.

The two packages total at least $3 trillion in new government spending at a time when Americans increasingly are concerned about inflation:

"I'm so glad you raised this, Chris," Buttigieg said:

This is extremely important. This bill will fight inflation. The reason this bill will fight inflation, among other things, is that we have a drag on our economy in labor supply because a lot of parents aren't going back to work because they can't find child care.

Now, you're going to see some politicians, maybe even on this program, saying that up is down and black is white, and somehow saying the opposite. But let me be clear, this bill will flight inflation.

And when I say that, that's not just me as a represent -- hold on, it's very important, Chris -- 17 Nobel Prize-winning economists have signed a letter talking about how the president's pro-family policies in this package will help fight inflation. Moody's and other Wall Street analytics firms have talked about how the president's bill will fight inflation.

Wallace told Buttigieg, "A lot of people worry that when you take an inflationary, overheated economy and you add $3 trillion, which is what these two bills would do, $3 trillion in new government spending, you're going to make it even worse. And there are a lot of economic experts who say pass it or not pass it, inflation will continue well into 2022."

"Yeah. So let's break this down, okay?" Buttigieg responded:

There's long-term and short-term. That's definitely true. Now, as I said, 17 Nobel Prize-winning economists are among those who have talked about how doing things to allow Americans to get back to work, putting money in their pockets, but also just making child care more affordable, is going to help with inflation in the long run.

Now, you're right, there's a short-term transitory inflation efforts. The ones that we're already seeing slowing down a little bit, but we're very mindful of, of course, because that's impacting Americans. That, of course, is a consequence of the economic effects of the pandemic.

Look, there are so many things that are still happening in our economy -- distortions, disruptions, things in our supply chain that are affecting prices, that are clearly a direct consequence of the pandemic, which is why the best thing we can do for our economy in the short term and to deal with these transitory issues is to put the pandemic behind us, which is where the president's decisive leadership is so important.

The best thing we can do for the long run, for issues around pricing and supply chain is better infrastructure so that goods can move smoothly in this country and better pro-family policies like child care.

According to the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, "if the money supply (total amount of money in circulation) grows at a faster rate than the economy’s ability to produce goods and services, then inflation will result."

Other causes of inflation include demand outpacing supply and the higher cost of wages and materials raising prices for consumers.

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