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FOCUS: Progressives Threaten to Torpedo Infrastructure Deal After Sinema Comes Out Against $3.5 Trillion Spending Bill
Written by <a href="index.php?option=com_comprofiler&task=userProfile&user=60309"><span class="small">Andrew Solender, Forbes</span></a>   
Thursday, 29 July 2021 11:44

Solender writes: "Democrats on the Senate Budget Committee agreed to a massive .5 trillion spending package Tuesday, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) announced, a major step toward the thin Democratic majority's goal of funding climate change initiatives, expanding safety net programs and boosting other priorities without any Republican support."

Sen. Kyrsten Sinema. (photo: Getty)
Sen. Kyrsten Sinema. (photo: Getty)

Progressives Threaten to Torpedo Infrastructure Deal After Sinema Comes Out Against $3.5 Trillion Spending Bill

By Andrew Solender, Forbes

29 July 21


rogressive members of the House are signaling they may be willing to withhold their votes on a bipartisan infrastructure deal announced Wednesday after Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) came out against the $3.5 trillion price tag for Democrats’ go-it-alone spending bill.

  • Rep. Mondaire Jones (D-N.Y.) said he is a “no” on the infrastructure deal unless the Senate sends the House a budget reconciliation package that “meets the moment.”

  • Another progressive, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio Cortez (D-N.Y.), told Forbes Sinema’s position is “ridiculous,” also tweeting that Sinema shouldn’t presume the infrastructure bill will “survive a 3 vote House margin.”

  • Sinema holds outsized power to shape a reconciliation bill, which can pass without the 10 Republican votes needed to overcome a filibuster, but only with the support of all 50 Senate Democrats and Vice President Kamala Harris.

  • By the same token, four House Democrats can take down legislation without GOP support – a dynamic that nearly sank a bill funding the Capitol Police – though the infrastructure bill is likely to get House Republican backing.

  • Sinema had said in a statement that while she supports “many of the goals” in the reconciliation bill, she does not support spending $3.5 trillion, adding that she will “work in good faith” to find a compromise.

  • The scuffle between House progressives and a key Senate moderate comes as the Senate is poised to advance the infrastructure package as soon as Wednesday night with the support of 10 Senate Republicans.

Crucial Quote

“We were sent to Congress to transform lives. If the Senate fails to support a reconciliation package that meets the moment on climate and our care economy, I can’t see myself supporting their goal of passing a bipartisan package for infrastructure,” Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-N.Y.) told Forbes in a statement.

Big Number

$550 billion. That’s the amount of new spending in the bipartisan infrastructure package, which includes $110 billion for roads, bridges and other core infrastructure projects, $66 billion for rail, $65 billion for broadband, $73 billion for energy infrastructure, $55 billion for water infrastructure and $39.2 billion for public transit.

What To Watch For

Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.), chair of the 92-member CPC, said in a statement her colleagues are “not guaranteed” to vote for an infrastructure package “until the reconciliation bill is agreed to and passed with our priorities sufficiently funded.” your social media marketing partner