U.S. Senate leader pushes for infrastructure progress, sets vote Reuters

© Reuters. File picture: On July 13, 2021, U.S. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) spoke to reporters after the Senate Democratic Weekly Policy Luncheon held at the Capitol in Washington, U.S.Reuters/Elizabeth Franz

Authors: Susan Cornwell and David Morgan

Washington (Reuters)-The majority leader of the U.S. Senate on Thursday urged lawmakers to make progress on President Joe Biden’s agenda to vote on the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill and asked Democrats to support more The big 3.5 trillion dollar budget blueprint.

Democratic Majority Leader Chuck Schumer told the Senate that the bipartisan infrastructure bill will face a preliminary procedural vote on Wednesday, apparently to start the process.

The bill is still unfinished. More than 20 lawmakers from both parties have been working for weeks to reach a consensus on the details of the measure, which is expected to provide funds for roads, bridges, ports and other “hard” infrastructure. It has the support of Biden, and his fellow Democrats almost control the Senate.

“All parties involved in the negotiation of the bipartisan infrastructure bill must now finalize their agreement so that the Senate can start considering the legislation next week,” Schumer said.

Advancing this measure requires 60 votes, which means that at least 10 Republicans must join all Democrats to support the Senate’s legislation, which is divided on a 50-50 ratio.

On Thursday, Senator Rob Portman, the leader of the Republican Party of the organization, said that unless legislation is ready, he will not vote to advance the measure next week, so there are signs of difficulty.

Portman said that lawmakers are taking action as soon as possible, but he will not shorten the process. “If we don’t have a product, I won’t vote for it…we will do it well.”

Schumer dismissed this concern. “We have no reason not to start voting next Wednesday. This is what we are going to do,” he told reporters.

Schumer said he hopes that all Senate Democrats agree to advance an additional $3.5 trillion budget blueprint by Wednesday, which includes climate measures and increased spending on social services.

Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell told Fox News that all Republicans would vote “no” to the $3.5 trillion measure.

The blueprint covers most of Biden’s economic and social agenda, including spending on childcare and education. The Democrats hope to increase taxes on the wealthy and companies to cover the cost.

The Democrats need the support of all 50 senators, plus the decisive vote of Vice President Kamala Harris, to pass a $3.5 trillion measure against the Republican opposition in the 100-seat Senate, using a term As a strategy of reconciliation, the 60-vote threshold for advancing legislation bypassing the normal conditions of the House of Representatives.

Biden on Capitol Hill on Wednesday gave reasons for a $3.5 trillion plan and a smaller bipartisan infrastructure bill, the day after Senate Democrats agreed on a budget blueprint.

But not all Democrats expressed their blessings. Some said they wanted to see the details.

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