Last week, President Joe Biden caved to the demands of progressives in his party on an infrastructure package that he’s long hoped will be the cornerstone of his first year in office — but the effort doesn’t appear to have won him any goodwill.
According to the Washington Examiner’s Sarah Westwood, Biden sought last week to placate progressive House members who had been urging him not to negotiate with Republicans on infrastructure spending.
Westwood explained Sunday: “Their objections prompted House Speaker Nancy Pelosi [D-CA] and Biden to back a strategy that requires any bipartisan deal to be passed alongside a much larger spending package on a party-line vote — undermining the chances of Republicans backing the deal.”
The president appeared at a press conference on Thursday to tout the newfound compromise. He was flanked at the presser by moderate Democratic Sens. Kyrsten Sinema (AZ) and Joe Manchin (WV), as well as Republicans Mitt Romney (UT) and Susan Collins (ME).
Biden just can’t win
But the apparent bipartisanship didn’t stop New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez from lashing out at Biden in a series of tweets following the event.
“The diversity of this ‘bipartisan coalition’ pretty perfectly conveys which communities get centered and which get left behind when leaders prioritize bipartisan dealmaking over inclusive lawmaking,” the progressive Democrat said, as Westwood reported.
“This is why a bipartisan [package] alone isn’t acceptable,” AOC added. “The exclusion [and] denial of our communities is what D.C. bipartisan deals require.”
The New York congresswoman went on to declare that “corporations” and “structural racism” are served by “this type of bipartisan dealmaking.”
Progressive policies polling poorly
Of course, Ocasio-Cortez’s thread just serves as further evidence of the growing divide within the Democratic Party as its more extreme elements vie for influence.
It all may lead to electoral problems in the 2022 midterms, as polling data put out this month by the left-leaning group Future Majority found that some progressive policies are a major turn-off for voters.
The organization found that 67% of voters overall and 76% of independents said they were less likely to vote for a candidate who favored defunding the police.
The prospect of abolishing the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency (ICE) polled poorly as well, as did socialism, reparations for slavery, and fully opening the border, according to the survey.