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U.S. politics and policy updates

Senior White House officials tried to alleviate people’s concerns that Joe Biden’s $3.5 trillion social spending plan would be blocked by the growing divergence within the Democratic Party on the president’s economic agenda.

“All I heard was how this package died. However, it is still going forward,” White House Chief of Staff Ron Klein told CNN on Sunday.

He added: “We will work together to find a way to develop a package that can pass the House of Representatives, the Senate, put it on the president’s desk and sign it into law.”

Last week, after Senator Joe Manchin, a centrist Democrat from West Virginia, called for a cessation of negotiations, the fate of the 3.5 trillion dollar plan-the plan would invest government spending on childcare and education And the fight against climate change. .

“Instead of rushing to spend trillions of dollars on new government programs and additional stimulus funds, Congress should suspend the strategy,” Manchin wrote in an opinion piece in the Wall Street Journal.

But Klein said that he thinks Manchin’s benefits of the plan are “very convincing” because it “fully pays” by taxing the wealthiest Americans and companies. “We work with Senator Manchin at every step. He is a partner of our government. He has strong opinions. Others have strong opinions,” Klein added.

Cedric Richmond, a senior White House adviser, added in a solo appearance at ABC that Manchin is an “important partner” and sees obstacles as “just the sausage-making process” unfolding in public. “We are still trying our best to pass our legislation,” Richmond said.

Manchin’s boycott, like some other moderate Democrats in the Senate and House of Representatives, triggered strong opposition from the party’s left wing and complicated the White House’s hopes of facilitating a deal. Some progressives threatened to block a separate $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure spending bill, which is also at the core of Biden’s economic agenda, and Manchin and other moderates enthusiastically support it.

“Rebuilding our crumbling physical infrastructure-roads, bridges, water supply systems-is important. Rebuilding our crumbling human infrastructure-healthcare, education, climate change-is even more important. Without $3.5tn, there would be no infrastructure. The bill… the bill,” Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont wrote in a tweet last week.

Last week, after deadly floods swept Manchin’s area, Jamaal Bowman, a House Democrat from New York, attacked Manchin on Twitter. “Hey joe, These are the houses in our district after the storm last night. How much destruction do we need to see before it is worth investing in our climate? He asked on Twitter.

Achieving the right political balance in the $3.5 trillion package will be particularly difficult because it does not have Republican support, so the Democrats must use a special budget process called “reconciliation” to pass it. This will allow it to be approved by a simple majority in the Senate. But the Democrats cannot lose one vote, because the House of Lords and the Republicans split at a 50-50 ratio, and Vice President Kamala Harris cast any tiebreaker votes. In the House of Representatives, the majority of Democrats is also very weak, and there is almost no room for defection.

Reaching a compromise on Biden’s trillion-dollar economic agenda has always been the top priority of the White House, but as the president struggles to respond Labor market recovery slows, The deadly new wave of coronavirus infections and sluggish job approval rates are partly due to the disorderly withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan.

But Richmond insisted that despite the difficulties, Americans did not turn their backs on Biden“We have to really assess what the American people are dealing with now. They are dealing with Covid and Delta variants. They are dealing with hurricanes Aida. They are dealing with many things. We are facing the challenge. I think people appreciate this. “



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