Portman rips 'arbitrary deadline of Wednesday' on infrastructure

Portman rips 'arbitrary deadline of Wednesday' on infrastructure
© Greg Nash

Republican Sen. Rob PortmanRobert (Rob) Jones PortmanHillicon Valley — Presented by Xerox — The Facebook Oversight Board is not pleased New Senate bill would take steps to protect AI-collected data Pro-Vance poll shows tight race in Ohio GOP Senate primary MORE (Ohio) criticized the decision to set a preliminary vote on the bipartisan infrastructure bill for Wednesday, calling the date an “arbitrary deadline.”

Senate Majority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerSchumer endorses democratic socialist India Walton in Buffalo mayor's race Guns Down America's leader says Biden 'has simply not done enough' on gun control The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Altria - Manchin heatedly dismisses rumors of leaving Democratic Party MORE (D-N.Y.) on Thursday announced that the upper chamber will vote to open debate on the bipartisan infrastructure package on Wednesday, setting up a key test vote on the legislation, which took months to negotiate. Schumer will file cloture on a shell bill that senators will later swap the bipartisan legislation into. 

Portman, however, told host Dana BashDana BashThe Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Altria - White House tackles how to vaccinate children ages 5+ Manchin lays down demands for child tax credit: report Cassidy says he won't vote for Trump if he runs in 2024 MORE on CNN’s “State of the Union” on Sunday that the bill should be brought forward “when it’s ready.”

“It's actually 11 Republicans and 11 Democrats putting this together. Chuck SchumerChuck SchumerSchumer endorses democratic socialist India Walton in Buffalo mayor's race Guns Down America's leader says Biden 'has simply not done enough' on gun control The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Altria - Manchin heatedly dismisses rumors of leaving Democratic Party MORE, with all due respect, is not writing the bill, nor is [Senate Minority Leader] Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellBiden says he's open to altering, eliminating filibuster to advance voting rights Pelosi says GOP senators 'voted to aid and abet' voter suppression for blocking revised elections bill Manchin insists he hasn't threatened to leave Democrats MORE [R-Ky.], by the way. So that's why we shouldn't have an arbitrary deadline of Wednesday. We should bring the legislation forward when it's ready, and it’s incredibly important legislation,” Portman said.

“It's important that we get it done. It’s been talked about for years, and yet it's got to be done in a thoughtful bipartisan way. We don't want to rush this process and make mistakes,” he added.

President BidenJoe BidenBiden: Democrats' spending plan is 'a bigger darn deal' than Obamacare Biden says he's open to altering, eliminating filibuster to advance voting rights Biden: Comment that DOJ should prosecute those who defy subpoenas 'not appropriate' MORE and a group of Republican and Democratic senators announced last month that they reached a deal for an infrastructure bill, bringing an end to a long negotiating period.

Last week, Schumer and Senate Budget Committee Democrats announced the second part of Biden's infrastructure initiative: a $3.5 trillion infrastructure package to be passed through budget reconciliation, which will bypass a GOP filibuster by requiring only a simple majority vote for passage.

Wednesday is also the deadline Schumer has set for Democrats to be ready to "move forward" on the separate budget resolution. 

When asked if the bipartisan bill would be ready by Wednesday, Portman told Bash that “we're still working on it. It’s more important to get it right than to meet an arbitrary deadline, and we are still negotiating.”