Biden touts bipartisan infrastructure deal in op-ed
President Biden in a Monday op-ed touted the $1.2 trillion infrastructure deal he reached with a group of bipartisan senators, arguing it would create millions of jobs and bolster the economy.
Biden said the deal was one “the American people can be proud of” in the op-ed published in Yahoo News.
The deal has come under criticism, particularly from liberals who say it is too small and risks leaving proposals they see as more important on the cutting room floor.
But Bided hailed the legislation in the op-ed, essentially pressing his party and Republicans to back it.
“The Infrastructure Deal is part of my economic strategy that, taken as a whole, will help create millions of jobs for years to come and add trillions of dollars in economic growth,” Biden wrote.
Biden said that the agreement, if passed by Congress, would rebuild roads and bridges, replace lead pipes, deploy charging stations for electric vehicles, expand access to high-speed internet, and expand access to public transit.
While he acknowledged that the deal leaves out “some critical initiatives on climate change that I proposed,” Biden argued that it would make strides by investing in clean energy transmission, modernizing the power grid and creating an electric bus fleet.
Biden has faced criticism from some progressives over the infrastructure agreement announced last Thursday and they have demanded he use the budget reconciliation process to advance a multi-trillion dollar bill with other Democratic priorities.
Sunrise Movement protesters demonstrated outside the White House on Monday to demand Biden do more to address climate change in an infrastructure package.
Biden reiterated in the op-ed that he will work with Congress to pass the rest of his economic and climate agenda through reconciliation while stressing the significance of reaching consensus with Republicans on the infrastructure package.
“Neither Democrats nor Republicans got everything they wanted in this agreement. But that’s what it means to compromise and reach consensus — the very heart of democracy,” Biden wrote. “When we negotiate in good faith, and come together to get big things done, we begin to break the ice that too often has kept us frozen in place and prevented us from solving the real problems Americans face.”
The bipartisan deal was thrown into doubt late last week after Biden said that he wouldn’t sign it unless the reconciliation bill with his other agenda items was also passed, which angered Republicans. Biden issued a statement over the weekend saying it wasn’t his intention to threaten to veto the infrastructure bill, a move that appeared to ease concerns among Republicans who agreed to the measure.
The White House still maintains that Biden wants to work to pass the bills in tandem, and on Monday press secretary Jen Psaki wouldn’t say whether Biden would sign the infrastructure bill if it came to his desk alone.
Biden is slated to travel to Wisconsin on Tuesday to highlight the infrastructure deal, legislative text of which has not yet been released.
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