US

Republican FURY after Biden tied $1.2trillion infrastructure deal to huge reconciliation package 

Lindsey Graham said Joe Biden made Republicans like look ‘f***ing idiots’ as GOP outraged ensues after the president tied the bipartisan infrastructure deal to passing his American Families Plan.

‘Most Republicans could not have known that. There’s no way,’ Graham told Politico. ‘You look like a f***ing idiot now.’

‘I don’t mind bipartisanship, but I’m not going to do a suicide mission,’ the South Carolina senator added.

Biden said Thursday of the bipartisan infrastructure bill: ‘If this is the only thing that comes to me, I’m not signing it.’

Graham was one of the 11 Republicans who supported the bipartisan infrastructure deal – but he is now backing out. 

Most of that group met virtually Friday morning to plot next moves.

‘There was general displeasure and anger,’ said a senior GOP aide who listened in, noting Graham was relatively quiet on the call.

Lindsey Graham said Joe Biden has made Republicans look like ‘f***ing idiots’ by reaching a bipartisan deal on infrastructure and then publicly tying it to whether his American Families Plan is passed in the Senate

Graham, who was one of the 11 Republicans who supported the bipartisan deal, tweeted 'No deal by extortion!' on Friday

Graham, who was one of the 11 Republicans who supported the bipartisan deal, tweeted ‘No deal by extortion!’ on Friday

A group of 10 bipartisan lawmakers lined up behind Biden on Thursday to announce they reached a deal on an infrastructure bill. But shortly after, Republicans were infuriated when Biden said: 'If this is the only thing that comes to me, I'm not signing it'

A group of 10 bipartisan lawmakers lined up behind Biden on Thursday to announce they reached a deal on an infrastructure bill. But shortly after, Republicans were infuriated when Biden said: ‘If this is the only thing that comes to me, I’m not signing it’

Another aide to one of the 11 senators told Politico: ‘Demanding that we didn’t pass the bipartisan deal unless reconciliation was passed first was never part of the deal.’

On the call Senators Mitt Romney, Rob Portman and Susan Collins were particularly enraged over Biden’s flip.

The group plans to speak again this afternoon and is considering releasing a joint statement emphasizing ‘there were no side deals.’

The White House doubled-down on Friday that Biden will not sign the infrastructure bill unless a $3-6 trillion reconciliation bill passes first for the left’s ‘family infrastructure’ and climate initiatives.

‘No deal by extortion!’ Graham tweeted Friday morning, adding that the double-sell is a ‘deal breaker’.

‘It was never suggested to me during these negotiations that President Biden was holding hostage the bipartisan infrastructure proposal unless a liberal reconciliation package was also passed,’ he continued in a thread on the issue.

‘I can’t imagine any other Republican had that impression,’ Graham tweeted. ‘I can’t believe the Biden Administration expects such an obvious bait and switch tactic – motivated by fear of the Left – to work in the Senate and be respected by the American people.’

‘Between fear of the Left and general incompetence, the last six months of the Biden Administration have been a disaster,’ he added.

Senator Bill Cassidy, one of the five Republicans who stood behind Biden when he announced the deal on Thursday, told Politico he felt ‘blindsided’ by the all-or-nothing approach by the White House.

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki did not repeat that threat, but also doubled-down that the two were reliant on each other

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki did not repeat that threat, but also doubled-down that the two were reliant on each other

Reporters surround Biden and a bipartisan group of 10 senators at the White House Thursday. Senators Mitt Romney, Rob Portman and Susan Collins specifically expressed ire over Biden typing the infrastructure bill to a massive reconciliation package for his leftist plans

Reporters surround Biden and a bipartisan group of 10 senators at the White House Thursday. Senators Mitt Romney, Rob Portman and Susan Collins specifically expressed ire over Biden typing the infrastructure bill to a massive reconciliation package for his leftist plans 

Portman made it clear linking the two pieces of legislation was never part of their deal with the White House.

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki did not explicitly retract Biden’s comments during her briefing Friday in a readout of a call between Biden and centrist Arizona Democratic Senator Kyrsten Sinema.

She did not go as far, however, as to reissue Biden’s threat not to sign the bill without reconciliation.

Asked at the briefing if infrastructure is ‘stuck in a pothole,’ Psaki said: ‘Absolutely not.’

Senator Jerry Moran, another Republican member of the group, wants assurances from centrist Democratic Senators Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema to make sure they are still on board with only supporting a bipartisan deal.

Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez suggested that any bipartisan deal in Washington is inherently racist as she pointed out all lawmakers who reached the infrastructure compromise Thursday with President Joe Biden are white. 

Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez suggested Thursday that all bipartisan deals in Washington, D.C. are inherently racist. AOC speaks before a Senate committee on June 23

Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez suggested Thursday that all bipartisan deals in Washington, D.C. are inherently racist. AOC speaks before a Senate committee on June 23

‘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 (which prioritizes delivering the most impact possible for the most people),’ the New York progressive congresswoman tweeted Thursday.

She included a picture of the bipartisan group at the White House when they announced the deal. The group included the president, Democratic Senators Kyrsten Sinema, Joe Manchin, Jeanne Shaheen, Mark Warner and Jon Tester and Republican Senators Rob Portman, Susan Collins, Bill Cassidy, Mitt Romney and Lisa Murkowski.

Fellow progressive ‘squad member’ Rashida Tlaib tweeted Thursday that senators are more worried about the process of legislation than getting results.

‘They ‘love the process more than the outcome’ is an accurate description,’ she wrote. 

'The diversity of this 'bipartisan coalition' pretty perfectly conveys which communities get centered and which get left behind,' AOC tweeted along with an image of President Joe Biden with the bipartisan group of lawmakers, who are all white

‘The diversity of this ‘bipartisan coalition’ pretty perfectly conveys which communities get centered and which get left behind,’ AOC tweeted along with an image of President Joe Biden with the bipartisan group of lawmakers, who are all white

She said bipartisan packages usually exclude minority communities. 'That's how you get GOP on board,' she insisted

She said bipartisan packages usually exclude minority communities. ‘That’s how you get GOP on board,’ she insisted

Representative Ilhan Omar, another member of the ‘squad’, however, appears to agree with the step forward.

‘Communicating this unified plan clearly to the Senate allows us to focus on the details of the bills without fighting over strategy,’ she wrote.

Ocasio-Cortez continued in her own Twitter thread: ‘This is why a bipartisan pkg alone isn’t acceptable.’

‘The exclusion & denial of our communities is what DC bipartisan deals require,’ she added. ‘That’s how you get GOP on board : don’t do much/any for the working class & low income,or women, or poc communities, or unions,etc.’

She implored: ‘We must do more.’

Biden stepped out on the White House driveway Thursday afternoon with the bipartisan group of lawmakers to announce ‘we have a deal’ on an infrastructure package.

‘We had a really good meeting and to answer your direct question, we have a deal,’ the president told reporters. ‘I think it’s really important, we’ve all agreed that, none of us got all what we wanted, I clearly didn’t get all I wanted, they gave more than I think maybe they were inclined to give in the first place.’

Fellow progressive 'squad' member Rashida Tlaib tweeted Thursday that senators 'love the process more than the outcome' when it comes to legislation

Fellow progressive ‘squad’ member Rashida Tlaib tweeted Thursday that senators ‘love the process more than the outcome’ when it comes to legislation

Other 'squad; member Ilhan Omar, however, appeared on board because it 'allows us to focus on the details of the bills without fighting over strategy'

Other ‘squad; member Ilhan Omar, however, appeared on board because it ‘allows us to focus on the details of the bills without fighting over strategy’

Biden stepped out of the White House Thursday afternoon with a group of 10 senators – five Democrat and five Republican – to announce 'we have a deal' on an infrastructure package

Biden stepped out of the White House Thursday afternoon with a group of 10 senators – five Democrat and five Republican – to announce ‘we have a deal’ on an infrastructure package

THE BREAKDOWN: HOW BIDEN PLANS TO PAY FOR HIS INFRASTRUCTURE PLAN

• Reduce the IRS tax gap – Raising a net of $100billion when $40 billion is invested in enforcement 

• Unemployment insurance program integrity – $72 billion when $8 billion invested

• Redirect unused unemployment insurance relief funds- $80 billion

• Repurpose unused relief funds from 2020 emergency relief legislation – $80 billion

• State and local investment in broadband infrastructure – $20billion

• Allow states to sell or purchase unused toll credits for infrastructure – $30billion

• Extend expiring customs user fees – $6.1billion

• Reinstate Superfund fees for chemicals – $13 billion

• 5G spectrum auction proceeds – $65 billion 

• Extend mandatory sequester – $9.2 billion

• Strategic petroleum reserve sale – $6 billion

• Public-private partnerships, private activity bonds, direct pay bonds and asset recycling for infrastructure investment – $100 billion

• Macroeconomic impact of infrastructure investment

TOTAL: $584.3 BILLION 

Ocasio-Cortez pointed out that all members of the bipartisan group who reached the deal are white, and suggested that inherently makes the infrastructure deal racist in nature and exclusionary of minority communities.

‘[F]olks can sometimes come across as careless when saying ‘well isn’t something better than nothing?’ For many communities, their not having a seat at the table is a precondition for bipartisan deals to work in the 1st place. & that’s not only seen as normal, but valued,’ she tweeted.

‘Meanwhile, when representatives of excluded communities object to the exclusion &marginalization required to make many bipartisan deals work, they’re dismissed as ‘unreasonable.’ So who/what often benefits from this type of bipartisan dealmaking? Corporations & structural racism,’ the congresswoman continued.

She did clarify, however, that not ‘any/all bipartisan deals are bad’, but urged Americans and lawmakers to ‘actually read what’s inside them instead of assume bipartisan=good’.

‘Isn’t something better than nothing; assumes that none of the individuals involved agreed to harmful policies. A huge assumption,’ she concluded. 

The White House said the deal will include $1.2 trillion in infrastructure spending over an eight year period.  Over a five-year period there will be $973 billion in infrastructure spending. 

The proposal would be paid for by reducing the IRS tax gap – essentially going after tax cheats – as well as redirecting  unemployment insurance relief funds and repurposing unused funds from the 2020 relief legislation. 

‘We made serious compromises on both ends,’ Biden said. ‘This reminds me of the days we used to get an awful lot done in Congress,’ the president also said. 

Senator Collins, a moderate Republican from Maine, said the two parties agreed on the ‘price tag, the scope and how to pay for it.’ 

At 2 p.m., Biden, flanked by Vice President Kamala Harris, gave an address and took questions about the fresh deal from the East Room before departing on a planned trip to North Carolina where he asked Americans to urge their hesitant neighbors to get vaccinated against coronavirus. 

President Joe Biden (right), flanked by Vice President Kamala Harris (left), expanded on his remarks during an East Room speech and Q&A with reporters later Thursday afternoon before leaving for North Carolina

President Joe Biden (right), flanked by Vice President Kamala Harris (left), expanded on his remarks during an East Room speech and Q&A with reporters later Thursday afternoon before leaving for North Carolina

The president said he didn’t have a ‘guarantee’ that the deal etched would pass, but explained why he was optimistic. 

‘I don’t have any guarantee, but what I do have is a pretty good read over the years of how the Congress or the Senate works,’ Biden said. ‘And the idea that … because someone’s not going to be able to get every single thing they want, they’re going to vote against some of things I just named, with nothing in here that’s quote-‘bad’ for the environment, bad for the economy, bad for the transportation, is unlikely.’ 

He added that while his party may be ‘divided’ – between a progressive and a more moderate wing – they’re also ‘rational.’  

Biden also talked about his lengthy relationship with members of the Senate, a body that he became a member of at age 30. 

‘Where I come from and in my years in the Senate, the single greatest currency you have is your word, keeping your word,’ Biden said. 

‘Mitt Romney’s never broken his word to me. The senator from Alaska, the senator … from Maine, they’ve never broken their word – they’re friends,’ he said, referring to Republicans Murkowski and Collins. ‘And so the people I was with today are people that I truth.’ 

‘I don’t agree with them on a lot of things, but I trust them when I say this is a deal, we’ll stick to the deal,’ he added. ‘Just like I doubt you’ll find any one of them who will say they don’t trust me when I say, ‘OK, this is a deal, on these issues, this is a deal we’ll stick with.” 

Biden also said that just because the deal was worked out, he wouldn’t try to push to get more of his priorities funded, including a large environmental tax credit. 

Biden’s original ‘American Jobs Plan’ was to cost $2 trillion. 

The Democratic president wanted to pay for the plan by bumping back up the corporate tax rate, which was decreased in 2017 as part of the tax bill signed by then President Donald Trump and backed by Congressional Republicans. 

Biden wanted it hiked from 21 per cent to 28 per cent. 

Republicans, however, balked at eroding any of the Trump-era tax breaks. 

President Joe Biden leads a bipartisan group of senators to the microphones on the White House driveway, announcing that they'd come together on a deal on an infrastructure package

President Joe Biden leads a bipartisan group of senators to the microphones on the White House driveway, announcing that they’d come together on a deal on an infrastructure package

Biden also wanted to uphold a campaign promise of not upping taxes on any American making under $400,000 annually. 

He boasted that he had been successful during the East Room address. 

‘We’re going to do it all without raising a cent from earners below $400,000,’ Biden said. ‘There’s no gas tax increase, no fee on electric vehicles.’

Republicans also touted their negotiating successes. 

In documents being shared by Portman’s office, according to PBS Newshour, GOP wins included no changes being made to the 2017 tax bill and other ‘responsible pay-fors,’ including repurposing $125 billion in COVID stimulus dollars for infrastructure projects instead. 

The GOP also touted that the slimmed down bill would solely cover infrastructure priorities and not ‘human’ infrastructure like paid family leave.  

President Joe Biden (right) speaks with Sen. Jon Tester (left), a Montana Democrat, outside the White House Thursday

President Joe Biden (right) speaks with Sen. Jon Tester (left), a Montana Democrat, outside the White House Thursday 

Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg arrives at President Joe Biden's East Room event to tout the bipartisan infrastructure bill framework

Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg arrives at President Joe Biden’s East Room event to tout the bipartisan infrastructure bill framework 

In order to make up for some of the spending Democrats wanted, lawmakers want to pair the infrastructure package with another bill, which would be pushed through using the Senate reconciliation process – meaning it can bypass a Republican filibuster if all 50 Senate Democrats are on board. 

‘This is important,’ House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said at her weekly press conference earlier Thursday. ‘There ain’t going to be a bipartisan bill without a reconciliation bill.’   

Biden told reporters in the East Room that he supported Pelosi’s plan to have the Senate pass both the infrastructure bill and then a second bill via reconciliation before the House picked them up. 

‘The bipartisan bill, from the very beginning, was understood there was going to be the second part of it. I’m not just signing the bipartisan bill and forgetting about the rest that I proposed,’ Biden said. ‘I proposed a significant piece of legislation in three parts. And all there parts are equally important.’  

If Biden gets the infrastructure deal passed, it will be the second significant piece of legislation he’ll sign since coming into office in January. 

Biden signed the $1.9 billion American Rescue Plan – the COVID-19 economic relief bill – into law in March.   

He has also proposed an ‘American Families Plan,’ which tackles areas like childcare and early education. 

‘Pay them more’: Bizarre moment Biden WHISPERS and blames employers’ low wages for worker shortages – then insists inflation will only be ‘temporary’

President Joe Biden blamed employers not paying staff enough in wages when speaking about concerns of worker shortages during his infrastructure press conference on Thursday.

Biden whispered his solution for companies struggling to find workers while taking questions from the press about the $953 billion deal carved out between a bipartisan group of Republicans and Democrats.

‘Pay them more’, he said while leaning into the microphone and looking out at the crowd.

His comments follow criticism that his $300-a-week unemployment benefits are encouraging Americans not to find a job and concerns that labor shortages will impact inflation. 

The president then insisted that inflation was only ‘temporary’ and will ‘go back down’ after consumer prices jumped 5 percent in May. 

It came just hours after his top federal reserve officials admitted they thought the rise in consumer prices would last longer than expected. 

'Pay them more' President Joe Biden blamed employers not paying staff enough in wages when speaking about concerns of worker shortages during his infrastructure press conference on Thursday

‘Pay them more’ President Joe Biden blamed employers not paying staff enough in wages when speaking about concerns of worker shortages during his infrastructure press conference on Thursday

His comments follow criticism that his $300-a-week unemployment benefits are encouraging Americans not to find a job and concerns that labor shortages will impact inflation

His comments follow criticism that his $300-a-week unemployment benefits are encouraging Americans not to find a job and concerns that labor shortages will impact inflation

He stepped out on the White House driveway Thursday afternoon and announced ‘we have a deal’ on an infrastructure package. 

‘We had a really good meeting and to answer your direct question, we have a deal,’ the president told reporters. ‘I think it’s really important, we’ve all agreed that, none of us got all what we wanted, I clearly didn’t get all I wanted, they gave more than I think maybe they were inclined to give in the first place.’  

The White House said the deal will include $1.2 trillion in infrastructure spending over an eight year period.  Over a five-year period there will be $973 billion in infrastructure spending. 

The proposal would be paid for by reducing the IRS tax gap – essentially going after tax cheats – as well as redirecting  unemployment insurance relief funds and repurposing unused funds from the 2020 relief legislation. 

‘We made serious compromises on both ends,’ Biden said. ‘This reminds me of the days we used to get an awful lot done in Congress,’ the president also said.  


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