Posts tagged with "Pass it through razor-thin congressional majorities"

Senate Dems reveal $3.5 trillion plan to invest in healthcare, climate change, and more

July 15, 2021

Senate Democratic leaders announced an agreement on Tuesday evening, July 13,  to advance a $3.5 trillion spending plan to finance a major expansion of the nation’s economic safety net, NBC News reports.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-New York) said the $3.5 trillion would be in addition to the $579 billion in new spending in the bipartisan infrastructure agreement.

He said the deal would include a “robust expansion of Medicare” that would include new benefits like dental, vision and hearing coverage, along with major funding for clean energy. “If we pass this, this is the most profound change to help American families in generations,” he said.

“Joe Biden is coming to our lunch tomorrow to lead us on to getting this wonderful plan that affects American families in a so profound way, more than anything that’s happened to generations,” Schumer told reporters. “We are very proud of this plan. We know we have a long road to go. We’re going to get this done for the sake of making average Americans’ lives a whole lot better.”

Senator Mark Warner (D-Virginia), a member of the Budget and Finance committees, said the plan would be “fully paid for.”

The agreement would prohibit tax increases on small businesses and people making under $400,000, a Democratic aide familiar with the deal told NBC News.

The announcement points to a challenge for Democrats, who will have to agree on a massive bill that is financed with new tax revenue to pass it through razor-thin congressional majorities, with no realistic hope of winning Republican support.

Democrats have no margin for error in the 50-50 Senate, and they can lose just four votes in the House before the legislation would be in danger of failing.

“This is, in our view, a pivotal moment in American history,” Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont), the Budget Committee chairman, told reporters.

“What this legislation says among many, many other things, is that those days are gone. The wealthy and large corporations are going to start paying their fair share of taxes, so that we can protect the working families in this country,” he said.

The agreement, a significant decrease from Sanders’ $6 trillion proposal, is an attempt to achieve consensus in an ideologically diverse Democratic Party with a host of competing interests. The legislation has yet to be written.

Research contact: @NBCNews