Senator Sinema rejects vote on big Biden package before infrastructure -source


WASHINGTON, Oct 14 (Reuters) - U.S. Senator Kyrsten Sinema, a key moderate, told fellow Democrats in the House of Representatives this week that she will not vote for a multitrillion-dollar package that is a top priority for President Joe Biden before Congress approves a $1 trillion infrastructure bill, according to a source briefed on the meeting.

Aides for Sinema, who has the power to stop legislation from advancing in the 50-50 Senate, did not respond to a request for comment.

In a previously unreported online meeting on Wednesday, Sinema and fellow moderate Democratic Senator Joe Manchin said they would not abide by any deadlines adopted by leadership to force votes on the package. The meeting was with a group of at least nine moderate House Democrats, the source said.

Congress already faces a pair of critical deadlines around Dec. 3, when the government faces the risk of a shutdown of most agencies and a historic debt default without congressional action. Democrats' razor-thin majorities in the House and Senate are also at stake in next year's midterm elections.

The group of House Democrats suggested putting a November deadline for passing the multi-trillion dollar and moving on with the bipartisan infrastructure bill, but Manchin and Sinema rejected that idea, arguing artificial deadlines are a bad idea, the source said.

Sinema and Manchin have balked at the Biden plan's initial $3.5 trillion price tag for a spending measure to fund social programs and fight climate change. As a result, the president faces a difficult balancing act in trying to bring down the cost but not alienate progressive Democrats who also are essential to passing the legislation.

Following a meeting this month on Capitol Hill with his fellow Democrats, Biden suggested the bill could cost around $2 trillion over 10 years.

White House press secretary Jen Psaki said the administration is not growing frustrated with the pace of negotiations, but added, "the time for negotiations is not unending."

"We're eager to act. I wouldn't say it's an impatience. I would say it's an interest in moving forward," Psaki said.

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Comments / 357

Carlos Cortez

cut 107 billion to help illegals. They are good hard working people. But their still here illegally. That money should go to help the American people. SSI, SSDI,, Veterans & R. R. Retirees.

Mitzi Menard

Stay strong, Sinema!! We have had enough of these bullies. If you just can’t switch to Republican, please become an Independent….

Cindy Edmonds

You are in no position to speak for the majority of the people. Fiasco Joe's approval rating at home are 38%. & equally as low on a global level. This Welfare Bill is not Progressive, it is a step back. It is not empowerment, it is entrapment.Housing Projects have never worked. How about making HUD housing more readily available with. 1.5 percent loans, that creates a pathway for homeownership. Example, a house in Detroit sells for $18k iwith a construction loan for updates of $40k, that is 58k is cheaper than rent. It builds equity. You must live in the house for 5 to 7 years before you sell. This is progressive, it creates jobs, which feeds the tax pool. It builds neighborhoods. There are no taxes on the equity of a home if the proceeds go to purchasing another house. ..People that own homes are more invested in their communities. Which means it is win-win. Welfare comes off the backs of working people and drags down the economy very quickly.


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