Senate Democrats reach $350 million spending agreement


Senate Democrats have agreed to advance $3.5 trillion in new government spending legislation without Republican support, with a view to setting Joe Biden’s economic agenda before next year’s midterm elections.

After negotiations between the most progressive lawmakers including Bernie Sanders of Vermont and moderate Democrats such as Mark Warner of Virginia, an intra-party agreement was reached on Wednesday night. White House officials including Brian Diss, director of the National Economic Council, also participated in the meeting.

The agreement may pave the way for Biden to gain congressional support for many of him. Trillion-dollar spending agenda These measures have been resisted by the Republican Party, such as new investment in childcare and education, measures to address climate change, and the expansion of some of the government’s medical benefits for the elderly.

However, this $350 million transaction only marks the first step in a congressional process known as a budget settlement, which allows some fiscal measures to pass the 100-member upper house of Congress by 51 votes instead of the required 60 The absolute majority of votes is for ordinary legislation.

The Senate is evenly divided between Democrats and Republicans, and U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris votes when needed.

last month, Biden reached an agreement Work with a group of moderate Democratic and Republican senators to provide $1.2 trillion in funding for physical infrastructure investment.But this deal Representative part only The US President’s economic plans, the opposition has always been willing to learn about these plans.

The bipartisan agreement is being transformed into a legislative text and is proceeding on a separate track, while the rest of Biden’s plans are under consideration Only the Democratic Party.

But if some Republicans support infrastructure deals Fall apart Or failing to make progress in Congress, its provisions may be added to legislation that the Democratic Party is considering implementing separately.

The agreement reached by the Democrats on Wednesday only sets a top-line figure for spending. Many details, including how to pay the $3.5 trillion in expenditure through tax increases, must be finalized and voted on at a later stage.

This process may jeopardize the transaction or lower its final price, and requires extremely delicate negotiations between the different parties of the Democratic Party.

But the legislators involved in the negotiations have shown a willingness to compromise in order to make legislative progress: Sanders, who is chairman of the Senate Budget Committee, hopes that new spending will reach $6 trillion, but ultimately chose a figure below this level.

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