Congress Passes $1.2 Trillion Infrastructure Bill, Actually Accomplishes Something Good?
Infrastructure week was really the friends we made along the way.
Joe Biden and the democrats seem to have taken their devastating losses in Virginia to heart, expediting the passage of the bipartisan infrastructure bill after months of painful negotiations. The final vote was 228-206, with thirteen Republicans voting in support of the bill, and six Democrats voting against it. The no votes included Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (N.Y.), Ilhan Omar (Minn.), Jamaal Bowman (N.Y.), Cori Bush (Mo.), Ayanna Pressley (Mass.) and Rashida Tlaib (Mich.).
The House passed the Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal, a once-in-a-generation investment that will create millions of jobs modernizing our infrastructure, and a rule that will allow passage of my Build Back Better Act.
We need to deliver. Yesterday, we proved we can.
— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) November 6, 2021
The bill includes $550 billion in new spending on infrastructure, with $110 billion for roads, bridges and major projects, $39 billion for public transit and $66 billion for railways. It also provides $65 billion for broadband infrastructure deployment and $55 billion for clear water investments. In addition, the bill features $7.5 billion for electric vehicle charging stations and $65 billion to improve the power grid.
BIF (as the bipartisan infrastructure bill is known) was passed in the Senate in August, but has been held up in the House after it was linked with the passage of the $1.75 trillion Build Back Better Act, a sweeping range of popular social programs including universal pre-k, lower childcare costs, 4 weeks of paid leave, and a massive investment to combat climate change. This morning the BBB Act passed a key procedural vote, with final voting on the bill expected in the coming weeks.
For many progressive dems, the infrastructure bill was a key point of leverage in passing the BBB Act, but they have since had assurances from Biden and moderate dems that it would be voted on as soon as the CBO score comes in. Still, the BBB Act faces a tough challenge in the Senate, mainly due to conservative obstructionist senators Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema.
BIG NEWS: We passed the infrastructure package, which will deliver historic investments in roads, bridges, highways, waterways, public transit, broadband, clean water, clean energy, and so much more! I’m excited that President Biden will be signing this critical funding into law. pic.twitter.com/v5j3lmAfPi
— Rep. Pramila Jayapal (@RepJayapal) November 6, 2021
As moderate dems await the CBO score on the BBB Act (an economic analysis from the Congressional Budget Office that determines whether or not the bill will add to the deficit), the passage of BIF is a massive win for democrats and the American people, with the biggest investment in infrastructure in our country’s history.
So far, Democrats have cut child poverty in half, added 5.3 million jobs, managed the most ambitious vaccine rollout in the nation’s history, and passed a $1.2 trillion investment in the water, roads, bridges and broadband.
Trump gave $2 trillion to the rich and tweeted a lot.
— Mikel Jollett (@Mikel_Jollett) November 6, 2021
Nancy Pelosi released a statement saying, “This landmark legislation will create millions of good-paying American jobs and make a lasting difference in our communities: strengthening our roads and bridges, improving public transit, expanding broadband, ensuring clean drinking water for every child and more. While our crumbling infrastructure has long held us back, these monumental investments will ensure America can outcompete any nation on earth for decades to come.”
President Biden called the bill a “monumental step forward for the nation,” adding “This is a blue collar blueprint to rebuilding America.”
We’ve just taken a monumental step forward as a nation. https://t.co/V9ShDcR3SJ
— President Biden (@POTUS) November 6, 2021
After 4 years of the other guy promising “infrastructure week”, Biden has finally delivered on a massive investment and jobs creation program. And given the impossibility of passing ANYTHING major in congress, this is a win for everyone.
Faced with a decrepit infrastructure,
habitual austerity and zero bipartisanship, a new president in 10 months passes the huge historic bill he campaigned on, with 13 GOP House and 19 GOP Senate votes. (After a divisive GOP POTUS who kept promising and utterly failing to do it.)
— Kurt Andersen (@KBAndersen) November 6, 2021
(via NPR, image: Alex Wong/Getty Images)
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