Supporters of the bipartisan bill say they expect Republican support to be in the low double digits; Representative Henry Cuellar, D-Texas, fixed it That number may have dropped from 10 to 12 in August as Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy and former President Donald Trump discouraged Republicans from giving the Democrats victory.
The math is simple: Democrats have a four-seat majority, so adding 12 Republicans provides a 16-vote cushion—meaning that progressives have enough decisive “no” votes to make a very subtle difference. Dozens of Democrats did not immediately respond to our request for comment, so the number 17 may remain under the number and this article will be updated as new responses come in. The Congressional Progressive Caucus had previously said it had specific commitments. The majority of its 95 members are for two-way strategy.
CPC chairman D-Wash. “There are many more, but not everyone is ready to go public,” said its representative, Pramila Jayapal. “We had the majority of our meeting in previous whip counts, and we expect the same now. We’ll reveal names later if needed. But I trust our numbers.”
The consensus bill, the Build Back Better Act, includes trillions of dollars to address poverty and climate change; as well as illicit costs for health care, childcare and education; and raises taxes on the rich and corporations. It only needs a simple majority in both the House and Senate to pass, because the conflict is not viable for the reconciliation process.
Some conservative Democrats mercenary Pharmaceutical companies, private equity barons and fossil fuel giants threaten to vote against the compromise bill. As such, strategists believe the only way to get the much-needed votes for the package is if other Democrats withhold enough votes to block the infrastructure bill’s passage unless the consensus bill also passes.
Over the weekend, Senator Joe Manchin, DW.Va., announced plans to vote against the compromise bill when it came to the Senate for a vote. Senator Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., responded by making his position clear: “Without the $3.5 trillion settlement bill, there would be no infrastructure bill,” he said. chirp.
The bipartisan infrastructure bill has already passed the Senate. The question now is whether enough Democrats in the House are willing to support legislation that depends on the passage of the compromise to prevent it from passing through the House without a vote, even with the support of Republicans.
The Daily Poster, The Intercept, and The American Prospect reached out to the offices of every voting Democrat in the House of Representatives and asked if they would commit to this strategy publicly. The following reps said they would: Reps. Jamaal Bowman, Brendan Boyle, Cori Bush, Veronica Escobar, Pramila Jayapal, Mondaire Jones, Ro Khanna, Andy Levin, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Ed Perlmutter, Mark Pocan, Katie Porter, Ayanna Pressley, Jan Schakowsky, Rashida Tlaib and Bonnie Watson Coleman.
“I’m absolutely confident that we’re addressing these two bills together,” Levin said at a press conference on Monday. He refused to go into “the little details of the process”.
Similarly, Ocasio-Cortez publicly expressed “If they come after our childcare and climate priorities, nothing would give me more pleasure than stockpiling a billionaire, black money, fossil fuel, ‘energy’ infrastructure bill drawn up by Exxon lobbyists,” he said in a livestream session.
“A Powerful Package”
The Congressional Progressive Caucus, of which 95 representatives were members, clearly explained the two-way strategy. August 10 letter to leadership. According to the letter signed by Jayapal, Porter and Omar, the majority of CPC members “want to delay their votes until the Senate” on the infrastructure bill. [adopts] a solid compromise package.”
CPC did not disclose names at the time. The number of whips indicates that some members do not want to register their names yet.
A warning that could threaten the entire strategy is that the CPC’s did not specify the size of the settlement package to meet the “robustness” standard, or any non-negotiable provision for the invoice. That leaves open the possibility of voting for a reduced compromise bill, which has been gutted by conservative Democratic legislators.
Some lawmakers drew their own lines in the sand. For example, Tlaib, tweeted out last week, “$3.5 trillion base.”
Regardless of the size of the bill, the most important line in the sand is whether the two bills will stay together.