Some House Democrats expressed dismay over the Senate’s bipartisan infrastructure talks on Monday during a private phone call– further underscoring divisions within the party just days before a procedural vote scheduled for Wednesday.
Politico, citing three sources on the call, reported that the conversation was described as “fiery.”
Rep. Peter DeFazio, D-Oregon, who was on the call, seemed to take comfort that the negotiations were limping along. He said the “whole thing falling apart is probably the best thing.”
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Rep. Salud Carbajal, D-California, told Politico that he was also on the call and said “the whole process seemed like [bulls—].”
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer is pressuring lawmakers to reach an agreement this week on the pair of massive domestic spending measures, signaling Democrats’ desire to push ahead aggressively on President Biden’s multitrillion-dollar agenda.
Jen Psaki, the White House press secretary, expressed her gratitude for Schumer’s effort in a late Monday tweet, crediting him for pushing “for progress in the Senate on bi-partisan legislation that will rebuild our nation’s infrastructure.”
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Schumer hopes to pass the bipartisan infrastructure bill that comes with a $1.2 trillion price tag and a $3.5 trillion budget resolution that will only receive Democrat support. Specific details of the 10-year resolution have not been ironed out. The bill aims to tackle climate change, education and an expansion of Medicare.
Schumer said if you include the two plans you get to “$4.1 trillion, which is very, very close to what President Biden has asked us for.”
The Politico report pointed out that while Biden has endorsed the infrastructure framework, some House Democrats have accused the president of icing them out of these discussions with Republicans.
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Schumer hopes to land an agreement before August recess. Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, on Sunday called Schumer’s push an “arbitrary deadline.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report