The House of Representatives dropped a scheduled vote to advance two key economic proposals because Democratic Democrats and center party leaders failed to break a stalemate on how to proceed with President Joe Biden’s sprawling economic agenda.
The chamber will meet again on Tuesday at 12 p.m. ET as Democrats seek to reach an agreement to advance legislation they see as an economic boon and lifeline for households. The Democrats in the House of Representatives hope to be able to hold a procedural vote by early Tuesday afternoon.
Biden’s domestic goals and his party’s desire to maintain control of Congress in next year’s midterm elections may depend on whether the Democrats find a compromise.
House spokeswoman Nancy Pelosi has pushed for a bipartisan $ 1 trillion infrastructure bill and her party’s $ 3.5 trillion separate spending plan to be passed at the same time. The process can take weeks or months as the House of Representatives, along with the Senate, must pass a budget resolution before lawmakers can draft a final proposal.
US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) is followed by reporters as she leaves a meeting with fellow Democrats in the House of Representatives when she speaks at the US Capitol in Washington, USA, about President Joe Biden’s comprehensive plan to expand of spending on social programs 23.08.2021.
Jonathan Ernst | Reuters
Nine members of Pelosis Caucus – enough to cost them a majority vote if they defected – called on the California Democrats to approve the Senate-passed infrastructure bill this week and send it to Biden’s desk. Pelosi wants to pair the bills to ensure the centrists, who are priced at $ 3.5 trillion, and the progressives, who think the infrastructure plan is inadequate, support both measures.
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The nine MPs rejected Pelosi’s plan to vote on Monday on a measure that would advance the infrastructure bill, budget and a separate voting rights bill. She wanted to pass the budget decision on Tuesday and then hold a final vote on the infrastructure bill only after the Democrats wrote their final spending plan and the Senate approved it.
Lacking the votes to move forward, Pelosi and her top deputies spent hours Monday night dealing with the objectors, including New Jersey Democratic MP Josh Gottheimer. Democratic leaders have reportedly committed to voting on the infrastructure bill by October 1.
As she left the Capitol early Tuesday, Pelosi asked if lawmakers would set a date for an infrastructure vote: “We’ll see tomorrow, won’t we?”
In a Washington Post column published on Sunday, the nine Democrats said they were “firmly against holding the president’s infrastructure bill hostage to reconciliation, risking its passage and bipartisan support behind it.”
Democratic leaders will use budget balancing to try to pass their plan aimed at expanding the social safety net and curbing climate change. The process would allow the party to approve it without a Republican vote.
The GOP has spoken out against the trillions of spending and tax hikes for businesses and the wealthy included in the plan.
While they don’t need Republican support, the Democrats have minute margin for error. They must win all 50 members of their Senate faction and all but three Democrats in the House of Representatives.
Centrists in the Senate have opposed the proposed $ 3.5 trillion price.
The budget would, among other things, expand Medicare coverage, expand household tax credits adopted last year, incentivize green energy adoption, extend paid family and sick leave, and improve access to childcare. Biden sees it as a supplement to the infrastructure plan.
The bipartisan bill would put $ 550 billion in new money into transport, broadband, and utilities.
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