Sunday Talk Shows

Buttigieg: Biden will have ‘open mind’ toward changes to infrastructure bill

Getty Images

Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said Sunday that President Biden would have an “open mind” toward changes to the size and funding of his infrastructure blueprint but added that he would not accept inaction.

Speaking on “Fox News Sunday” with Chris Wallace, the former South Bend, Ind., mayor said that the president was open to suggestions from both parties but reiterated that the administration wants to see major action on a bill before Memorial Day.

“I think the president will have an open mind” toward changes going into his meetings with lawmakers, Buttigieg said.

“Of course, a plan gets better when you get input, from our party, from their party,” he added.

When asked about a quote from Sen. Chris Coons (D-Del.), who told Punchbowl News this week that he thought the Senate could reach an agreement on a much smaller package, Buttigieg denied Wallace’s assertion that the White House needed to come up with an entirely new plan.

“I certainly don’t think we have to go back to the drawing board,” he said.

Buttigieg has emerged as one of the administration’s most public champions for Biden’s planned infrastructure bill, a $2 trillion package addressing roads, bridges, waterways and broadband access as well as issues of climate change such as providing funding for electric vehicle technology.

During Sunday’s interview, Buttigieg was also asked by Wallace about his past defenses of the bill, including an interview airing last Sunday on MSNBC during which the Transportation secretary suggested that 19 million jobs would be created should Biden’s proposal pass.

“You’re right. I should be very precise,” he told Wallace, who showed him a graphic indicating that an analysis from Moody’s that Buttigieg had cited projected a gain of just over 2 million jobs as a direct result of the infrastructure bill’s passage.

“It’s part of a scenario that Moody’s says will create 19 million jobs,” Buttigieg said.

Tags Chris Coons Chris Wallace Infrastructure Joe Biden Pete Buttigieg
See all Hill.TV See all Video