House Democratic Moderates To Block Budget Bill Unless Infrastructure Plan Gets Vote Now
Nine House moderates have sent a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-California) to warn that they will not vote for a $3.5 trillion budget resolution unless the House first approves the Senate’s $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill.
“We will not consider voting for a budget resolution until the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act passes the House and is signed into law,” the letter to Pelosi said. “We stand ready to help Congress and the President enact bipartisan infrastructure legislation.”
The letter is signed by nine House Democrats: Reps. Josh Gottheimer (D-New Jersey), Carolyn Bourdeaux (D-Georgia), Filemon Vela (D-Texas), Jared Golden (D-Maine), Henry Cuellar (D-Texas), Vicente Gonzalez (D-Texas), Ed Case (D-Hawaii), Jim Costa (D-California) and Kurt Schrader (D-Oregon).
The Biden administration and the Democrats in Congress have been working on a two-track effort to enact the $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill Senate passed last week, along with a $3.5 trillion package with more comprehensive plans to promote healthcare, childcare, eldercare and climate green energy.
Pelosi is moving the $3.5 legislative package through budget reconciliation, which allows them to pass the bill with a simple majority in the Senate without having to worry about the filibuster, which would require 60 votes.
The moderate House Democrats argue that their districts need the money from the infrastructure package immediately.
“Some have suggested that we hold off on considering the Senate infrastructure bill for months — until the reconciliation process is completed. We disagree,” the nine Democrats wrote in a letter to Pelosi. “With the livelihoods of hardworking American families at stake, we simply can’t afford months of unnecessary delays and risk squandering this once-in-a-century, bipartisan infrastructure package. It’s time to get shovels in the ground and people to work.”
While the moderate counterparts are pushing for the infrastructure bill, progressive Democrats in Congress are furious that they are going along with the Republicans’ vision. On Wednesday, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-New York) denounced the moderates as “conservatives.”
“Conservative* House Democrats. Let’s stop pretending that Dems who threaten to tank the President’s agenda, kill childcare/Medicare expansion, and work w/ GOP to expand the cruelest parts of our immigration system are “moderate.” They are not moderate. They’re conservative,” Ocasio-Cortez tweeted.
Conservative* House Democrats.
Let’s stop pretending that Dems who threaten to tank the President’s agenda, kill childcare/Medicare expansion, and work w/ GOP to expand the cruelest parts of our immigration system are “moderate.”
They are not moderate. They’re conservative. https://t.co/EW7t1gSN8A
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) August 11, 2021