(WTNH) — What does a Biden Administration mean for Connecticut? Simply put, getting federal money matters to the state’s future. The question is how much of it will actually filter down? And who will eventually pay for it?
Many expect with a Biden Administration, there will be a shift from COVID relief to COVID stimulus.
Governor Ned Lamont says, “Let’s not squander this opportunity. We have friends in the White House. This is our opportunity to get things done. We don’t overplay our hand. We play our hand.”
State Representative Matt Ritter, the new Democratic Speaker of the House, joked with Lamont and said, “You’re looking good for just having hip surgery, so get on the phone and make sure the President passes that stimulus package for the state assistance we are expecting.”
Connecticut and the Northeast have many power brokers in the new administration. From Chair of the House, Appropriations Committee, education, the environment. Not to mention Biden’s Vaccine Advisory Board, the Department of Commerce, Labor and the new majority leader of the U.S. Senate. The region is represented.
Governor Lamont is looking for federal aid to local governments to be dispersed over time, “Give us some flexibility to use that money for education. To use that money for state and local government and give us a couple of years so I can phase that in.”
Republicans say what matters are the right policies. Leora Levy, the Connecticut Republican National Committee Woman, says of the new cabinet, “A lot of people have come from the Obama administration and I’m concerned they will implement some of the same policies that were less than successful then.”
Levy adds Connecticut’s Republicans are focused.
“It’s really important that Connecticut and the nation have a strong loyal opposition party.” She points to Republican Senator Susan Collins from Maine.
“She will be the one both sides of the argument will be coming to in order to make deals and pass legislation,” added Levy.
How will programs like infrastructure, child tax credits and local aid be paid for? Democrats say, “They don’t see tax hikes in the near future, but the debt and deficit should be on our minds.”
The Senate is tied 50-50 Democrats to Republicans. Vice President Kamala Harris is the tie-breaking vote.