On The Money — Sussing out what Sinema wants

On The Money — Sussing out what Sinema wants
© Rod Lamkey/CNP/Pool

Happy Thursday and welcome to On The Money, your nightly guide to everything affecting your bills, bank account and bottom line. Subscribe here: thehill.com/newsletter-signup.

Today’s Big Deal: All eyes remain on Kyrsten SinemaKyrsten SinemaIRS data proves Trump tax cuts benefited middle, working-class Americans most Photos of the Week: Schumer, ASU protest and sea turtles Green groups spend big to promote climate policy MORE (and still on Joe ManchinJoe ManchinTrump haunts Biden vaccine mandate in courts IRS data proves Trump tax cuts benefited middle, working-class Americans most Overnight Energy & Environment — Presented by ExxonMobil — Dems press drillers over methane leaks MORE) as Democrats try to salvage Biden’s tax plan. We’ll also look at new trading rules for Fed officials and what sacrifices Pelosi is willing to make.

But first, find out why Alyssa Milano was on Capitol Hill.

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For The Hill, we’re Sylvan Lane and Aris Folley. Write us at slane@thehill.com or @SylvanLane, and afolley@thehill.com or @ArisFolley.

Let’s get to it.

Sanders hits Sinema for opposing reforms on drug prices, corporate taxes 

Senate Budget Committee Chairman Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) on Thursday expressed exasperation over Sen. Kyrsten Sinema’s (D-Ariz.) opposition to raising taxes and empowering Medicare to negotiate lowering prescription drug prices amid intraparty debates on the multitrillion-dollar budget reconciliation package.

Asked if he was surprised by Sinema’s opposition to raising corporate taxes, which poses a major obstacle to a deal on the legislation, Sanders replied: “I am surprised that there is anybody in the United States Senate not prepared to do what the American people want, and that is demand that the wealthiest people in this country start paying their fair share of taxes and that we end all of the tax loopholes that the wealthy enjoy.”

The background: Sanders’s tough words directed at Sinema come a week after he published an op-ed in The Charleston Gazette-Mail calling out centrist Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) for resisting a proposal to lower prescription drug prices and expand Medicare benefits.

Sanders and Manchin have since tried to patch up their differences and have met several times this week in an effort to reach a deal on a framework agreement by sometime this month. But Manchin said Thursday that negotiators would be unable to reach a deal on such a framework by the end of the week, as had been previously hoped.

A different take: Even so, the head of the powerful House Ways and Means Committee said Thursday that Sinema is ready to get a deal. 

Rep. Richard NealRichard Edmund NealGOP fears boomerang as threat of government shutdown grows House passes giant social policy and climate measure The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by ExxonMobil - House to vote on Biden social spending bill after McCarthy delay MORE (D-Mass.) said he spoke with Sinema for roughly 30 to 40 minutes Thursday morning in an effort to break the impasse over Biden's massive social benefits package. According to Neal, Sinema indicated that a failure to pass the president's top agenda item is not an option. 

"I started the conversation with that. I said, 'Kyrsten, this has got to pass.' She said, 'I couldn't agree more,' " Neal told reporters outside the Capitol.

Here’s more from Mike Lillis.

LEADING THE DAY

Pelosi open to scrapping key components in spending package

Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiUS expected to announce diplomatic boycott of Beijing Olympics soon: report Pressure grows to remove Boebert from committees Lawmakers remember Bob Dole: 'Bona fide American hero' MORE (D-Calif.) said Thursday that she's ready to scrap two key components of the House's $3.5 trillion social benefits package — a long-term extension of the child tax credit and a hike in corporate tax rates — in order to get the legislation to President BidenJoe BidenChina eyes military base on Africa's Atlantic coast: report Biden orders flags be flown at half-staff through Dec. 9 to honor Dole Biden heading to Kansas City to promote infrastructure package MORE's desk.

  • The child tax credit has emerged as a key selling point of the massive social spending bill, which stands at the center of Biden's economic agenda, and powerful Democrats are pushing to permanently extend an expansion of that credit, which they first adopted in March.
  • Pelosi said she also supports that long-term extension but will accept the shorter one-year window that Biden proposed earlier in the week, saying the president is driving the train.

"That's what the president has agreed to," Pelosi said during a press briefing in the Capitol.

"Let me just say I want a permanent child tax credit. I've wanted it for years," she quickly added. "This is the president's big issue. It is called the Biden child tax credit. So if it's acceptable to him, in light of the bill, it's acceptable to me." 

Mike Lillis has more here.

FED OFFICIALS BANNED FROM TRADING SHARES

Federal Reserve banning officials from wide range of financial trades

Top Federal Reserve officials will be banned from a broad range of financial trades and face stricter approval and disclosure requirements under a set of new rules announced by the bank Thursday.

The new rules come as the Fed faces growing backlash over investment decisions made by top officials in 2020 as the bank deployed trillions in emergency relief efforts meant to stabilize financial markets and support the economy through the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Fed Chairman Jerome Powell, whose term expires in February, said the new rules “raise the bar high in order to assure the public” that senior officials maintain “a single-minded focus on the public mission” of the central bank. The trading scandal is among several factors that could threaten a potential renomination from President Biden.

Read more here.

ON THE HOUSE

House Democrats scramble to save housing as Biden eyes cuts

House Democrats rallied support Thursday behind the affordable housing provisions in President Biden’s proposed social services bill with hundreds of billions in investments on the chopping block.

Democrats on the House Financial Services Committee, witnesses who’ve struggled with housing insecurity and a range of advocates urged party leaders not to scrap more than $300 billion meant to expand and repair affordable housing.

Biden and Democratic leaders are attempting to strike a deal on a broad framework by the end of the week, giving Waters and affordable housing advocates a narrow window for defending their provisions.

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Read more here.

Good to Know

Trading in Trump-linked SPAC Digital World Acquisition Corp. (DWAC) was halted after shares soared following the announcement of former President TrumpDonald TrumpBiden heading to Kansas City to promote infrastructure package Trump calls Milley a 'f---ing idiot' over Afghanistan withdrawal First rally for far-right French candidate Zemmour prompts protests, violence MORE’s new social media network, Truth Social.

Here’s what else have our eye on:

That’s it for today. Thanks for reading and check out The Hill’s Finance page for the latest news and coverage. We’ll see you tomorrow.