Democrats were on Friday finalizing a massive climate and spending package they hope to pass on a party-line vote to deliver a crucial political victory for President Biden ahead of the midterm elections.
With liberal holdout Sen. Kristen Cinemas (D-Ariz.) falling in line, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (DN.Y.) says he has no way of passing the so-called Inflation Reduction Act using a complicated legislative process. All 50 are Democratic votes. Will start on Saturday.
The 11th-hour change includes some tax changes sought by cinema to win its support when fellow liberal Sen. Joe Manchin (DW.V.) agreed to revive the $700 billion deal, which Was presumed dead last week.
Schumer said he had to urge them to cut from the cinema bill a provision for closing a tax loophole that benefits hedge fund managers.
“She wouldn’t vote for the bill, not move forward, unless we had a choice,” Schumer said, adding that Democrats replaced it with a tax on corporate stock buy-backs.
Democrats need the tie-breaking vote of all 50 of their senators and Vice President Kamala Harris to move the measure through the Senate on some solid opposition from Republicans, who say the plan’s tax increases and spending will worsen inflation. and damage the economy.
Sinima’s quick settlement came as a welcome surprise to Democrats, who were concerned that the Liberals would drag talks on for days and possibly make demands that could be deal-breakers for Manchin or others.
Little details were released about the last-minute agreement and some warned that last-minute damages could still stifle the deal.
Republicans Will Explore Possibility introduce a long string of amendments To speed up legislative actions and force Democrats to take politically damaging votes on issues such as border security.
“How will Vote-e-Rama be? It will be hell,” said Sen. Lindsey Graham (RSC).
The bill would mark a major victory for Biden, who is enjoying a modest political winning streak that could lift his rock-bottom approval rating and give Democrats a fighting chance to hold on to the Senate in November. Is.
This success will provide Democrats with a potentially powerful platform before the midterm to address climate change, reduce the cost of prescription drugs, and increase US energy security. They would also claim to move to reduce inflation – although the GOP would dispute this and analysts say its effect on rising prices would be minor.
“We have taken another important step toward reducing inflation and the cost of living for America’s families,” Biden said in a statement.
Democratic infighting had weakened Biden and forced him to abandon a more comprehensive version of the plan last year.
Cinema said Democrats had agreed to remove a provision that increased the tax on “interest interest” or profits that went to executives of private equity firms. It is a proposal he has long opposed, although it is a favorite of Munchkin and many progressives.
Senate lawmakers are reviewing a measure to decide whether a provision violates the chamber’s procedures to avoid a GOP filibuster for the so-called budget reconciliation process, a decision that could still upset the delicate balance in the bill. .