Sunday, May 9, 2021

Congress faces a jam-packed agenda as Democrats face division over legislative policy and strategy


Perhaps the Democrats’ best chance to legislate is more than a bill aimed at tackling the rise of hate crimes against Asian Americans, but even facing resistance from some Senate Republicans who expected an on Wednesday The chief is trying to block the measure ahead of the procedural vote. .

And in the House, the chamber will move this month on a bill to make the District of Columbia the 51st state – but that plan lacks 60 votes to pass a Senate filmbuster. And Democrats do not have the votes to change the rules of the film, so a simple majority of senators instead of 60% can advance the law – a source of major tension in the ranks.

Against that backdrop, Senate Democrats also lack 50 votes to pass a top priority for the party’s base: a major election overhaul bill, given the opposition of one of their members, Joe Manchin of West Virginia, And stricter resistance from the GOP.

All of which point to this grim reality for Democrats: Despite Washington taking control of all, and pushing through a massive $ 1.9 trillion Kovid relief measure earlier this year, Biden’s agenda The next phase is becoming a difficult slogan. And progressive Democrats say that if the leaders of the House and Senate do not deliver for their party’s base, there will be a backlash to the left.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a New York Democrat who has not ruled out a primary bid against Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, said the House and Senate leaders need to give the Kovid relief plan and beyond just “two transformative bills” needed. Emerging Infrastructure Package.

“I don’t think it’s acceptable,” Ocasio-Cortez told CNN, referring to settling on those two priorities.

A Democratic aide told CNN that a group of Democratic senators held another meeting with Schumer on Wednesday about a compromise on the minimum wage increase. A minimum wage increase of $ 15 per hour – a progressive priority – did not make it into the final Kovid relief package. In addition to Manchin, Kirsten Sinima of Arizona, Tom Kapper and Chris Cones of Delaware, John Tester of Montana, Maggie Hassan of New Hampshire, Ron Whedon of Oregon, Bernie Sanders of Vermont, Patty Murray of Washington and Angus King, an independent. Maine, all were invited.

Other challenges ahead drive the Sargam.

Legalists are hoping to advance the law Trying to rein in China’s economic influence In the United States, in an effort that represents Biden’s best opportunity in a major bipartisan package from Congress. But also that 50-50 may face hurdles for the final passage in the Senate and with a narrow Democratic majority in the House.

Biden and Schumer have said they want to work on all of these major issues in a bipartisan manner, but Republicans are deeply skeptical, noting that Schumer has at times used the budget reconciliation process to circumvent a filming Set the stage for what he employed to enact Kovid. -19 relief.

10 GOP senators said in a statement last week, “The administration considered its effort completely inadequate to justify its stand-alone strategy.”

A new reality

And when he returns from his two-week vacation, a new reality has settled on Washington: Munchin insisted again and again He would reject attempts by liberals in his party to repeatedly undermine filmmaking or use budget cohesion to pass legislation without votes from Republicans. If Democrats want infrastructure or immigration or something else, they would have to negotiate a settlement that would win the support of at least 10 Republicans, the West Virginia Democrat has said.
“If filming ends or budget reconciliation prevails, a new and dangerous precedent will be set for passing sweeping, partisan legislation that changes political control every time our country changes direction. , “Manisha wrote Last week the washington post.

The infrastructure debate will now withdraw this week that Biden has set out what he wants in the law, but there are several details that must be resolved. The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee plans to move a surface transportation bill by the end of May, but several other House committees also plan to take action on other aspects of the proposal. Bill still has to write.

Joe Manchin on the fate of Joe Biden's agenda

The Democratic Party says that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has not made any decision on how to move the bills procedurally and to do it through the budget reconciliation process.

Pelosi said she wants a bill to pass the House by 4 July. But when CNN was asked last week whether it was ready to withdraw the price tag to win over Republicans, Pelosi indicated an openness to talk to the GOP but to meet the demands of the minority party Was a little ready for.

“It can’t be too small because what we’re talking about now needs to be transformational and it should be big,” the California Democrat said.

But there are already signs of trouble for Biden’s plan. Specifically, Manchin said the corporate tax increases in the bill are too high and he wants them replaced.

“As the bill exists today, it needs to be changed,” he said last week.

Congress Democrats say they want to deliver Biden’s agenda, but they pay broad attention $ 2 trillion-plus offer Biden’s first significant legislative victory would be achieved very differently from the Kovid relief bill.

And Biden needs all Democrats to leave behind their massive infrastructure package, if there is any chance of passing this Congress. MPs will be invited to a meeting this week to discuss infrastructure legislation.

On gun legislation, Schumer has committed to putting a bill passed by the House that would extend universal background checks to a backdrop on the Senate floor, despite not having enough votes to pass it. The vote is designed to pressure Republicans to react to the recent mass shootings. But Manchin and Tester – both red-state Democrats – are confused by the House Democrats’ view, meaning even two House-pass bills may fail to win support from 50 Democratic senators.

Meanwhile, there is still a humanitarian crisis on the US-Mexico border. Over the weekend, several different delegations are making trips to South Texas to see migrant processing facilities before returning this week.

Democrats still want to see something happen in the Senate with immigration. Two separate bills, one to help farm laborers and one to help Dreamers, were passed in the House but hit a wall in the Senate. Senate Judiciary President Dick Durbin, a Democrat from Illinois who is leading the effort on immigration, wants some time to work with Republicans on the issue.

Democratic Sen. Chris Murphy of Connecticut, who is spearheading the effort on gun safety legislation, also said he would like some time to work with Republicans on expanding background checks, and has called the chamber’s two-week holiday Has spoken with GOP senators.

Schumer has stated that he may have some time, but not too much.

CNN’s Claire Foran contributed to this report.

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