House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) set up a rules meeting for the multi-trillion dollar spending bill currently being worked on in the House, even though no agreements about a frameworks or details about what is being included in the proposed legislation are available less than 48 hours before the meeting.
There is currently no final proposed text in the bill as Democrats wrangle and fight among themselves about what will be included, how much it will cost, and how (or whether) it will be paid for.
House Democrats were willing to pass the $3.5 trillion bill as originally proposed by President Joe Biden, but Sens. Krysten Sinema (D-AZ) and Joe Manchin (D-WV) both said they would not vote for such a large bill and demanded changes.
Democrats are now working on a scaled-back bill with a price tag between $1.5 and $2 trillion, but are having difficulty getting enough agreement on what to include and whether to raise taxes to pay for it.
The Rules Committee typically marks up legislation as a final step before a vote, but will hold more of a hearing on the bill if final text still isn’t available.
The Hill seemed to say that setting the meeting may be more of a smokescreen to make it look like progress has been made on the bill when it actually hasn’t been.
Pelosi said in her letter about the meeting that Democrats were “close” to a final version of the bill. “[W]e are close to agreement on the priorities and the topline of the legislation, which can and must pass the House and Senate,” Pelosi wrote in a letter to Democrats.
Biden, on the other hand, is desperate to have an agreement on the bill before he leaves for Europe on Thursday, so that he can tout the climate provisions he hopes the bill will have.
“American prestige is on the line”
“The president looked at us in the eye and he said, ‘I need this before I go represent the United States in Glasgow,’” Rep. Ro Khanna (D-CA) said on “Fox News Sunday.” “American prestige is on the line.”
Moderate Democrats are getting frustrated with progressives’ demands for more and more spending. “It’s the effing progressives,” one moderate Democrat told Fox News, saying progressives were asking for “unreasonable things.”
Not just progressives, either, apparently. Biden himself is pushing to have a banking proposal that would report large transactions to the IRS included in the bill, even though Manchin has said he opposes the provision.
Despite Pelosi trying to give Biden cover with the Europeans, Congress appears far from ready to get this legislation passed any time soon–which is good for taxpayers who will be footing another enormous bill if it does pass.