As Democratic infighting continues over their $3.5 trillion social spending legislation, the fate of Joe Biden’s presidency and the Democrats’ majority in Congress hang in the balance.
While moderate Democrats have pushed for legislation with a significantly lower price tag, progressives have dug their heels in, refusing to vote for a bill that is less than $3.5 trillion. Progressives have also threatened to kill the president’s bipartisan infrastructure bill, which is scheduled for a final vote tomorrow, if the moderates don’t make a reconciliation counteroffer that is robust enough by their standards.
Ultimately, President Biden must act urgently, using his influence among Democrats and moderate Republicans in the House to ensure the passage of the bipartisan infrastructure agreement, first and foremost.
Simultaneously, the president along with Democratic leaders in Congress must develop a set of principles or a framework that will convince progressives not to kill the bipartisan infrastructure plan, and then work to negotiate down the size of the $3.5 trillion bill to something that moderate Democratic Senators — namely, Joe Manchin (W.Va.) and Kyrsten Sinema (Ariz.) — can get on board with.
Democrats are urging President Biden to lean way in as the party faces big divides amid a rocky stretch, with his signature legislative item at stake.
The calls for Biden to act as the party’s unifier-in-chief comes as the president acknowledged that his agenda is at a “stalemate,” amid high-profile fights between not only moderates and progressives but the House and Senate over the scope of the sweeping spending package.
Democrats are looking for sustained hands-on engagement with the hope Biden could sway holdouts and resolve points of tension that have slowed down Democrats’ efforts to pass a $3.5 trillion spending package.
A motley gang of deal-making House Republicans took partial credit for pushing through President Joe Biden’s infrastructure plan this summer. That doesn’t mean they’ll all vote for it.
The roughly 50-member centrist group, dubbed the Problem Solvers Caucus, wedged its way into this summer’s multitrillion-dollar talks between Biden and some like-minded Senate Republicans. While the group’s exact role in prying loose a Senate compromise is up for debate, many of those House members, including Republicans, claimed a critical role.
Democrats — and even some Republicans — in the group are now pleading with their GOP counterparts to ignore a robust whipping operation by their own party and back the infrastructure bill on the floor Monday.