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Biden Economic Agenda on Hold as More Americans Hit Hardships

  • Democrats return to Washington this week with no deal in sight
  • ‘We have debated it long enough,’ No. 2 Senate Democrat says
Volunteers fill boxes at a food bank distribution warehouse in Omaha, Nebraska, U.S.

Volunteers fill boxes at a food bank distribution warehouse in Omaha, Nebraska, U.S.

Photographer: Dan Brouillette/Bloomberg

American families are feeling the financial squeeze of soaring inflation and a persistent pandemic as fractious Democrats return to Washington this week no closer to a deal on a tax and spending bill party leaders hoped would by now provide relief. 

Despite gangbusters growth at a 6.9% annual rate during the final quarter of 2021, other economic measures tell a very different story. Average wages are falling behind inflation and consumer sentiment plummeted in January to the lowest in more than a decade.