President Joe Biden told reporters Thursday that he would not sign the bipartisan infrastructure agreement if Congress did not agree to another measure: a budget resolution that Democrats call "human infrastructure" they want to push through reconciliation to bypass the Senate. disabled.
Biden told reporters at the White House that he would not sign the bipartisan deal if it was the “only one” that seeks his desk.
“I’m not just signing the bipartisan bill and forgetting about the rest that I proposed,” he later said, adding that the Democrat-pushed package that seeks to expand the nation’s social safety net is “equally important” to the bipartisan bill that deals with physical, more traditional infrastructure needs.
Speaker Nancy Pelosi said at a news conference on Capitol Hill early Thursday that she would not hold a vote on the bipartisan infrastructure bill "until the Senate passes the bipartisan bill and reconciliation bill."
Biden agreed with fellow Democrats, telling reporters Thursday: "I will work closely with President Pelosi and Leader Schumer to make sure that they move through the legislative process quickly and in tandem. Let me emphasize that: and in tandem.”
The bipartisan infrastructure deal Biden announced earlier today is expected to cost $973 billion over five years, $579 billion of which is new spending. The total cost would increase to $1.2 trillion if projected over eight years. The new spending will go towards building roads, bridges, and highways, as well as electricity, broadband, public transport, and water infrastructure, among other initiatives.
“I’m getting to work with Congress right away on the other half of my economic agenda as well—the American Family Plan—to finish the job on childcare, education, the caring economy, clean energy tax cuts—clean energy, and tax cuts for American families, and much more,” Biden told reporters, referring to the second measure he wants to be passed.
Democrats want this measure to pass through a Senate process called reconciliation, which only requires a simple majority to pass. Otherwise, Democrats will have to persuade 10 Republicans to support the bill to meet the 60 votes needed to end the disruption. Schumer launched the reconciliation process on June 16.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) criticized Biden's recent comments. Less than two hours after publicly praising our colleagues and agreeing to a bipartisan agreement, the president took the extraordinary step of threatening to veto it. "Your head is almost spinning," he said in the Senate.
Senator Lindsey Graham said on Twitter: “If reports are accurate that President Biden is refusing to sign a bipartisan deal unless reconciliation is also passed, that would be the ultimate deal-breaker for me.”
25 June 2021