President Joe Biden is set to make the passage of a bipartisan infrastructure bill official on Monday, Fox Business reports, potentially delivering his administration a boost even as his approval rating continues to decline.
Although a handful of Republicans in the Senate and House voted with Democrats to pass the $1.2 billion spending package, plenty of conservatives are bemoaning the expensive new law.
Nevertheless, Biden has touted the achievement as a step toward the bipartisanship he promised during the 2020 presidential campaign.
Concerns about bill’s size and scope
The legislation was passed in the House earlier this month with the support of 13 Republican lawmakers. Six Democrats dissented, meaning that it would not have passed without support from the GOP side of the aisle.
As for the sweeping infrastructure agenda the bill is designed to fund, it includes repairs and upgrades to the nation’s roads, bridges, and airports — along with more controversial progressive measures.
Republican New York Lt. Gov. Betsy McCaughey noted that the bill will give first dibs on contracts to minority-owned businesses and address a highway that critics say unjustly bisects minority neighborhoods.
Furthermore, the bill is by some accounts the biggest investment in climate change policy in the nation’s history, including billions of dollars earmarked for the development of electric vehicle infrastructure and other green technologies.
Biden faces plummeting popularity
That package has even attracted opposition from moderates in the Democratic Party, which pressured the president to downsize it to a relatively smaller $1.8 trillion.
Even after the protracted negotiations on Capitol Hill, the resulting proposal remains massive and has sparked confusion regarding what it actually entails.
Meanwhile, Biden’s approval rating remains at historical lows, falling below 40% in some recent polls. Underscoring his inauspicious position, his administration received an apparent rebuke from voters as off-year elections in Virginia led to an upset win by GOP gubernatorial contender Glenn Youngkin.
Although many disaffected voters clearly bought into Biden’s campaign vow to restore “normalcy” and govern as a moderate, it is becoming increasingly obvious that he is not living up to those promises.