Transportation Secretary Pete ButtigiegPete ButtigiegThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Biden talks, Senate balks Airlines suspend US flights in response to 5G deployment AT&T, Verizon to delay 5G rollout near certain airports MORE said on Sunday that Biden administration officials and Democratic lawmakers on Capitol Hill are “the closest we have ever been” to passing the bipartisan infrastructure bill and a massive social spending package as negotiators look to finalize a deal this week.
When asked by host George StephanopoulosGeorge Robert StephanopoulosAlec Baldwin turns over cell phone in 'Rust' probe How a nice-guy South Dakota senator fell into a Trump storm GOP senator says he would 'take a hard look' at another Trump run MORE on ABC’s “This Week” how he can be optimistic that the measures will pass when Sens. Joe ManchinJoe ManchinVoting rights failed in the Senate — where do we go from here? Biden: A good coach knows when to change up the team The Memo: Biden looks for way to win back deflated Black voters MORE (D-W.Va.) and Kyrsten SinemaKyrsten SinemaVoting rights failed in the Senate — where do we go from here? Biden: A good coach knows when to change up the team The Memo: Biden looks for way to win back deflated Black voters MORE (D-Ariz.) have not yet expressed support for the larger package’s framework, Buttigieg said President BidenJoe BidenUS threatens sweeping export controls against Russian industries Headaches intensify for Democrats in Florida US orders families of embassy staff in Ukraine to leave country MORE is confident they will pass after discussions with progressives and moderates in the party.
“We are the closest we have ever been, and the president put forward this framework having talked to them and others throughout the progressive and moderate wings of our party confident that it will pass,” Buttigieg said.
The Transportation secretary said the administration is “very optimistic” that the packages will have the votes to pass this week.
“The president put forward this framework because he believes that it will pass the House and the Senate and can get to his desk, and as soon as it does, it’s going to make such a difference in the lives of Americans,” he added.
“We’re very optimistic,” @SecretaryPete tells @GStephanopoulos about spending negotiations on Capitol Hill.— This Week (@ThisWeekABC) October 31, 2021
“The American people are impatient to see the kind of pro-family policies that are in that Build Back Better Plan.” https://t.co/jsjtsvPeDM pic.twitter.com/TI5E3rOoXK
Buttigieg’s comments come after Democratic leadership last Thursday punted a vote on the bipartisan infrastructure bill after progressives refused to weigh in on the legislation because they were still reviewing the recently released framework of the larger reconciliation package.
Progressives have been adamant in their demand that the two bills be passed together.
Negotiations had stalled largely because of Manchin and Sinema, who said they would not support the original $3.5 trillion price tag on the reconciliation package.
The two moderates made positive remarks on the $1.75 trillion framework last week, but they have yet to offer their endorsements.
A Democratic leadership aide told The Hill on Saturday that the caucus is looking to pass both packages as early as Tuesday, which would cap off months of contentious negotiations over a key part of Biden’s agenda.