Sen, Rob Portman (R-OH), who is helping to negotiate the bipartisan infrastructure proposal, pointed to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) commitment Sunday not to bring the infrastructure proposal. bipartisan to the floor until the reconciliation package is completed. ready for a vote.
Appearing on ABC News, Portman said he is “not happy” with Pelosi’s plan.
“The infrastructure bill has nothing to do with the reckless tax and spending extravagance that she is talking about in terms of reconciliation as she called it,” Portman said. “So, no, I’m not happy with what he said because it is inconsistent with the agreement that we have on a bipartisan basis.”
When asked if that means Congress can’t pass an infrastructure proposal, Portman responded that if Pelosi “gets her way, we could.”
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“I’m not sure what the future of reconciliation will be,” Portman said. “I know that the bipartisan infrastructure package is very popular with the American people and in the United States Congress because it makes sense. We urgently need it. “
Portman went on to insist that the negotiations on the infrastructure proposal are truly bipartisan.
“It has been totally bipartisan from the beginning. It’s the way we should be doing things here in Washington to get things done, and I can’t believe the Speaker of the House is blocking it, ”Portman said.
Portman also told ABC News on Sunday that the bipartisan group of infrastructure negotiators is “about 90 percent of the way” toward a deal.
“We are going to legislate the language with colleagues and with staff, and I feel good to have done it this week,” Portman said, before reiterating that transit funding remains a sticking point in the bipartisan infrastructure deal.
“We are not getting much response from Democrats on this,” Portman said. “That is the only pending issue, frankly, at the moment. My hope is that we see progress on that still today. “
Earlier Sunday, Pelosi made it clear that she is not going to back down on her promise not to take a vote on the bipartisan infrastructure deal until the Senate passes a larger infrastructure package through reconciliation.
“I’m not leaving him on the court until we have the rest of the initiative,” Pelosi said. “I am excited that they will have a bipartisan bill. I hope it’s soon. But yes, I am standing by because the fact is that the president has said that he wants to have a bipartisan bill, and we all do. But that’s not the limitation of the president’s vision. He wants to rebuild better. “
The comments from Portman and Pelosi came after a week of struggling infrastructure negotiations.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) had scheduled a vote last Wednesday to open debate on the bipartisan infrastructure deal. As expected, the procedural vote on the bipartisan infrastructure deal fell through Wednesday, and Republicans prevented the chamber from starting debate on the bill.
Schumer also set a deadline for Democrats to finish working out what would be in their $ 3.5 trillion budget reconciliation package by Wednesday, a deadline that was missed as Democrats failed to reach consensus on what would be. in your reconciliation package.
Additionally, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) angered Democrats after threatening to hold the debt ceiling hostage, saying he doubts Republicans will vote to raise the debt ceiling. , a move that revives the old tactics of the Republican Party’s risky News Block than the Republicans. favored during the Obama administration.
Despite the drawbacks, the bipartisan infrastructure group said they expected to reach an agreement on Monday.
But on Thursday, Portman noted that funding for transit systems remains a sticking point in the bipartisan infrastructure deal, and did not rule out the odd possibility of leaving transit funding aside in the bill focused primarily on infrastructure. physical infrastructure.
However, Democrats have indicated they are ready to go it alone if the bipartisan infrastructure deal fails by including the bipartisan “hard” infrastructure bill in the reconciliation bill that does not require GOP support.
See Portman’s comment below:
GS: “Does that mean we’ll end up with nothing?”
– This week (@ThisWeekABC) July 25, 2021