House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Sunday that House Democrats will pass the bipartisan infrastructure bill this week and reach an agreement on their $ 3.5 trillion reconciliation package, despite of the huge differences between moderates and progressives.
“Let me tell you that we are going to pass the bill this week,” Pelosi, a California Democrat, said of the infrastructure bill on ABC’s “This Week.” “But you know that I will never bring a bill to the room that does not have the votes. And I think that every time you put an arbitrary date … you can’t choose the date, you have to go when you have the votes.”
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The House Speaker also said in “This Week” that Democrats will “absolutely” need to reach an agreement on the reconciliation package before the infrastructure bill can be passed. This was a nod to progressives in the House who say several dozen of their members will vote against the infrastructure bill with no guarantees of reconciliation.
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“It’s all the wonderful legislative process we have,” Pelosi said, dismissing comments from “This Week” host George Stephanopoulos about how daunting the legislative task for Democrats is.
“Building Back Better has the support of more than 95% of our caucus … There are some who disagree and I respect that for the size of the package, and a couple in the Senate as well,” he continued. “And we have to find common ground, respectful of the views of others … it is not about moderates versus progressives.”
As part of the negotiation process, Pelosi said the price of the reconciliation bill will almost certainly drop to less than $ 3.5 trillion.
Pelosi said in a letter to House Democrats on Saturday that she plans to pass the bipartisan infrastructure bill and the reconciliation bill by Thursday. That at the same time gives him some leeway in voting on the infrastructure bill, which was originally planned for Monday but may be delayed a couple of days, and gives Democrats very little room for error on the bill. reconciliation law.
The House Budget Committee in a rare meeting on Saturday approved the text of the reconciliation bill with a “no” Democratic vote, but with a wide gulf between the party’s progressives and moderates, the bill is subject to significant changes.
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Pelosi’s strategy of moving the reconciliation bill so quickly appears to be part of an effort to get progressives to join the infrastructure bill, which they say they will not vote for unless they have guarantees that it will pass. the reconciliation bill.
It’s unclear if the tactic will work, but moderates have expressed confidence that she will be able to garner enough votes to get the infrastructure bill passed.
Chad Pergram of Fox News contributed to this report.