Gottheimer presses for House vote Monday on infrastructure bill
Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-N.J.) is pressing for a Monday vote on the bipartisan infrastructure bill in the House, as some progressives threaten to tank the bill if it is not passed with the multitrillion-dollar spending package.
“On Monday, there’s absolutely no reason, we’re facing what we are on the climate, or we’re facing what we are on our crumbling roads and bridges, New Jersey’s got the third worst roads in the country, with transit and everything else, there’s no reason to not vote on that,” Gottheimer told host Jim Sciutto on “CNN Newsroom,” Wednesday, referring to the bipartisan infrastructure bill.
When asked by Sciutto if he is confident that the House will vote on the bill Monday, Gottheimer, who co-chairs the Problem Solvers Caucus, responded: “I am.”
“It’s essential that we get this across the finish line and we all voted, every Democrat in the House voted to bring this bill to the floor on Sept. 27, on Monday, so we’ll start doing that, we’ll debate it,” Gottheimer said.
“Speaker has said that she’ll help get the votes, she committed to that publicly, and there’s no one better than getting votes than Speaker [Nancy] Pelosi [D-Calif.], so we’ll get this done, I’m really optimistic about that,” he added.
Amid a standoff between moderate and progressive Democrats, Rep. Josh Gottheimer says he’s still confident a vote on the infrastructure bill will happen Monday.
— CNN Newsroom (@CNNnewsroom) September 22, 2021
Gottheimer’s comments come as Democrats on Capitol Hill are at odds over a pair of spending packages that are both essential components of President Biden’s legislative agenda.
The Senate last month passed a $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill, which Pelosi has vowed to pass by Monday, Sept. 27.
On Tuesday, Gottheimer said he was holding Pelosi to her commitment.
“It was a commitment. Every single member of the Democratic caucus voted for [that deadline]. We’ll be bringing the legislation to the floor on Sept. 27,” Gottheimer told The Hill. “I’m not waning in my confidence [about Sept. 27], if that is what you are asking.”
Some progressive Democrats, however, are now threatening to block the bill if it is not passed with the party’s $3.5 trillion reconciliation package, which is still being negotiated on Capitol Hill.
Progressives are concerned that moderate Democrats will renege on the party’s plan to pass the reconciliation package, which includes investments in education and climate change.
Some moderates, though, are not totally on board with the reconciliation package. Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), for example, has said the $3.5 trillion price tag is too high.
When asked about recent comments from Congressional Progressive Caucus Chair Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.), who said moderates will be to blame if the bills do not get passed, Gottheimer said Democrats will pass the reconciliation package after the bipartisan bill is approved.
“I’ll just tell you right now that many of us are really hard at work at getting that next bill passed, the reconciliation bill that she was just talking about, and you know we’re gonna get that across the finish line too,” he said.
“Well first the vote on infrastructure, of course, is out of the Senate sitting, waiting for our vote so we should all get behind that on Monday, and then we’re gonna of course keep working so hard as we have been on the reconciliation bill,” he added.