Introduction and summary
Congress has passed massive COVID-19 relief legislation. Most of the economic discussion surrounding President Joe Biden’s American Rescue Plan (ARP) focuses on its delivery of urgently needed help to struggling families, businesses, and state and local governments. The primary impact of this legislation is thus on the demand side of the economy. People, businesses, and state and local governments will get more income and therefore raise their spending—easy enough. But the ARP should also be seen as an important first step in tackling the lackluster supply side of the economy. An economy can only enjoy healthy, stable growth that generates sufficient jobs and resources for broadly shared prosperity if both supply and demand go up.
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The recently announced American…