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Democrats are creating a week of “intensification” on Capitol Hill as they try to close their differences and shut down the government shutdown in defense of Joe Biden’s legal program.
The Democrat-controlled House of Representatives was expected to vote Monday on Biden’s $ 1.2tn infrastructure bill, which the U.S. Senate passed with bipartisan support earlier this year. To become law, the bill must be passed in both chambers of Congress.
But several progressive lawmakers in the House are cutting off support for the spending package because they wanted to save Biden’s larger $ 3.5tn budget plan, which would make a historic investment in America’s social security net. Moderate Democrats in both the House and Senate say the budget plan is too expensive and should be made smaller.
These divisions have put pressure on House Democratic Speaker Nancy Pelosi if she has to balance the interests of her party’s rival group if she helps the president deliver on his campaign promises. With Democrats retaining an eight-vote majority in the House and controlling the 50-50 Senate by the lowest margin, Vice President Kamala Harris was able to cast a tiebreaking vote. Party workers are already fearing they will lose next year’s midterm elections.
Pelosi insisted Sunday that the infrastructure bill would be passed “this week”, but acknowledged that Monday’s vote was unlikely.
“We will bring the bill to the floor [on Monday] For consideration, ”Pelosi told ABC News. “But you know I never bring a bill to the floor where there’s no vote.”
Washington State Democratic Congresswoman Pramila Jaipal, who was president of the House Progressive Caucus, echoed her remarks and sought assurances for weeks that the 3.5 3.5 million budget would not be budgeted by moderates such as Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Kirsten Cinema of Arizona. .
“The speaker is an incredibly good vote counter, and he knows where his caucus stands and we were really clear about that,” Jaipal told CNN on Sunday. “The vote is not there. I don’t think he will bring it. ”
Jaipal’s fierce opposition set the stage for a few days of tension on Capitol Hill. In a letter to colleagues over the weekend, Pelosi said it would be a week of “intensification” and called on all House Democrats to take part in the Crank talks on Monday evening.
But in comments that could provoke further discontent among progressives, Pelosi acknowledged on Sunday that it was all certain but that the $ 3.5tn budget plan would be made even smaller to pass both the House and the Senate. Asked if the final number would be small, Pelosi replied: “Yes. . . It seems to be self ev published. ”
At the same time, Democrats are under pressure to avoid a federal government shutdown, extending the deadline for midnight on Thursday to allow the federal government to continue borrowing money.
The House passed a bill last week to avoid a shutdown and increase the U.S. debt limit until December next year. But Democrats insisted the bill should be passed in the Senate in bipartisan support, even if Republican leaders refuse to sign.
During Donald Trump’s presidency, Republicans voted three times to raise the debt limit. They are now saying that Democrats are irresponsibly spending federal funds, and should lift their own debt limits.
Senate Banking Committee top Republican Pat Tommy told CNN on Sunday that he “must not vote” this week to increase funding and debt limits to the government, arguing that markets were stagnant because of the stagnation in Capitol Hill.
“No such catastrophe is going to happen. . . If it was even a serious risk, don’t you think last week’s equity markets. . . Instead of being perfectly healthy like them, maybe they do business?
“I think that’s because millions of investors across the United States know that no such catastrophe will happen. What’s going to happen after Republicans don’t vote, [Senate majority leader] Chuck Count. . . The budget will amend the resolution so that Democrats themselves can overcome the debt limit.
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