A two-party group of U.S. senators said Thursday that they have reached an agreement on the proposed framework for massive infrastructure spending without a major tax increase.
In a statement, the group, made up of five Republicans and five Democrats, said they were discussing their vision with their cooperation and the White House of Biden, and appeared optimistic about gaining widespread support.
“Our team … has worked in good faith and reached a two-party agreement on a realistic framework of commitment to modernizing our country’s infrastructure and energy technologies,” said the group led by Democrat Kyrsten Sinema and Republican Rob Portman.
“That investment would be fully repaid and would not include tax increases,” they claimed.
No details of the deal were given in the statement and Democratic critics of the deal that was born shot at the senators in a hurry to leave Washington for the weekend.
An infrastructure bill that does not prioritize the climate crisis will not exceed the house. Time.
– Representative of Ro Khanna (@RepRoKhanna) June 10, 2021
A person familiar with the deal told Reuters news agency that it would cost $ 974 billion in five years and would include $ 1.2 trillion in eight years and $ 579 billion in new spending.
Chuck Schumer, the Democratic leader of the U.S. Senate majority, said he was open to considering the bilateral proposal, but wanted to see it in writing – and added that he would also push for a spending measure to monitor only democratic support.
“They told me orally, things; I asked for the paper, I’ll look at it, ”Schumer said. “But we’re still on two tracks. A two-way street and reconciliation, and both are moving forward. “
Encouraged by President Joe Biden A huge $ 1.7 trillion package to renovate roads and bridges and address other issues such as education and home health care.
Republicans rejected the president’s infrastructure plan, tackling climate change, building some social programs and paying for himself by raising taxes on U.S. corporations.
Infrastructure and climate are inseparable. Every decision about one is a decision about the other.
– Secretary Pete Buttigieg (@SecretaryPete) June 10, 2021
It was offered by Biden go back his proposal but found a delay this week Senator Joe Manchin, a centrist Democrat, stressed that any infrastructure plan has bilateral support and Biden has ruled it out. smaller proposal Proposed by Republican Senator Shelley Moore Capito.
This left room for a group of 10 moderate senators from both parties to come up with a new idea designed to create enough support to pass the Senate with 60 votes needed for most bills. The Senate is split 50-50 between the two parties.
Republicans said Republican Senate leader Mitch McConnell also told the group he was open to the idea.
In addition to Sinema and Portman, the 10-senator negotiating team includes Democrats Joe Manchin, Jeanne Shaheen, Jon Tester and Mark Warner, along with Republicans Bill Cassidy, Susan Collins, Lisa Murkowski and Mitt Romney.
Manchin told reporters on Thursday that “things are going in the right direction.”
Romney said there is also a “general consensus” about the amount of higher spending, but it has not been specifically determined.
He did not specify the number, but told reporters he expected the package would be paid in part by indexing the federal gasoline tax to inflation.
He and Tester also talked about the provision that the Internal Revenue Service can raise revenue after tax fraud.
At the same time, infrastructure-related transportation bills progressed at the congressional committee level.
While Biden was in Europe, White House communications director Kate Bedingfield said administrative officials had pushed for negotiations between the two parties in both the House of Representatives and the Senate.
“Right now we’re seeing a lot of progress,” he told CNN.
“This is how a bill becomes law. It is a process with many steps, and it encourages us to make all the progress that is taking place on these different paths at the same time. “
But the push for bipartisanship has been picked up by some democracies that have criticized a Republican approach that reduces attention to physical infrastructure and rejects tax increases for corporations and the wealthy.
Breaking: Senate Treasury President Ron Wyden told me that negotiations between the party have not been anything acceptable to Democrats and that it is time to agree on an infrastructure bill.
– Lawrence O’Donnell (@Lawrence) June 10, 2021