Chamber of Commerce warns moderate Democrats against voting for reconciliation

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce launched a six-figure ad campaign Wednesday pressuring moderate House Democrats to vote down the $3.5 trillion reconciliation package. 

The ads target Reps. Cindy AxneCindy AxneDemocratic retirements could make a tough midterm year even worse Club for Growth squeezes front-line Democrats on reconciliation plan Biden meets with vulnerable House Democrats with agenda in limbo  MORE, (Iowa), Angie Craig (Minn.), Antonio DelgadoAntonio Ramon DelgadoUS Chamber targets more House Democrats with ads opposing .5T bill Business groups create new headache for Pelosi Chamber of Commerce warns moderate Democrats against voting for reconciliation MORE (N.Y.), Josh Harder (Calif.) and Elaine LuriaElaine Goodman LuriaYoungkin under fire for invoking George Soros in school board debate Former VA secretaries propose National Warrior Call Day to raise military suicide awareness Business groups create new headache for Pelosi MORE (Va.), urging them to reject Democrats’ party-line spending plan over its proposed tax hikes.  

The corporate lobbying group endorsed all of those House Democrats in the 2020 election. The ad campaign comes after the Chamber sent out a “key vote” letter to lawmakers urging them to reject the reconciliation package or risk losing the group’s endorsement.

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“No member of Congress can achieve the support of the business community if they vote to pass this bill as currently constructed,” the letter read.

Big business groups are lobbying lawmakers to pass the $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill, which does not raise taxes, but oppose the larger reconciliation package that is funded by increased taxes on corporations and wealthy individuals. 

U.S. Chamber of Commerce CEO Suzanne Clark called the $3.5 trillion plan an “existential threat to America’s fragile economic recovery and future prosperity” in a statement Wednesday.

“We will not find durable or practical solutions in one massive bill that is equivalent to more than twice the combined budgets of all 50 states,” Clark said. “ The success of the bipartisan infrastructure negotiations provides a much better model for how Congress should proceed in addressing America’s problems.”

Democrats can only afford three defections in the House when they vote on the reconciliation package. Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiJudge to hear Trump's case against Jan. 6 committee in November Kamala Harris engages with heckler during New York speech GOP lawmaker calls for Meghan, Harry to lose royal titles over paid leave push MORE (D-Calif.) has insisted that the bipartisan infrastructure bill must pass alongside the party’s spending package that invests in climate, child care and other Democratic priorities. 

Moderate Democrats previously negotiated a deal with Pelosi to vote on the bipartisan infrastructure bill by Sept. 27. Progressive lawmakers believe that they will have less leverage to pass the $3.5 trillion spending plan if the smaller infrastructure bill is already signed into law.