On The Money — House Democrats pass Biden's big bill

Happy Friday 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: House Democrats finally got President BidenJoe BidenBiden to provide update Monday on US response to omicron variant Restless progressives eye 2024 Emhoff lights first candle in National Menorah-lighting ceremony MORE’s social services and climate bill over to the Senate. We’ll also look at growing backlash to Biden’s nominee to lead the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) and Democratic objections to a Jerome Powell renomination.

But first, find out how a hedge fund billionaire bought the Constitution.


For The Hill, I’m Sylvan Lane. Write me at slane@thehill.com or @SylvanLane. You can reach my colleagues on the Finance team Naomi Jagoda at njagoda@thehill.com or @NJagoda and Aris Folley at afolley@thehill.com or @ArisFolley.

Let’s get to it.

House passes giant social policy, climate bill

Speaker N Pelosi (D-Calif.) addresses reporters during a press conference on Friday, November 19, 2021 after the Build Back Act vote. 

House Democrats on Friday passed their mammoth social spending and climate plan in a 220-213 vote, securing a major victory for the party ahead of the Thanksgiving break and providing a boost to President Biden at a tumultuous moment for his administration. 

The vote came a half-day later than scheduled, a delay caused by House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin McCarthyGOP governor says McCarthy should condemn Boebert's anti-Muslim remarks With Build Back Better, Dems aim to correct messaging missteps GOP eyes booting Democrats from seats if House flips MORE (R-Calif.), who had commandeered the floor Thursday night for more than eight hours with a speech protesting legislation he warned would send the country into an economic tailspin. 

Democratic leaders scrapped their plan to vote Thursday night, reconvened the chamber Friday morning and passed the roughly $2 trillion bill on a near party-line vote. Rep. Jared GoldenJared GoldenSunday shows preview: Boosters open to all US adults; House Dems pass spending plan on to Senate Five takeaways: House passes Biden's sweeping benefits bill Overnight Energy & Environment — House passes giant climate, social policy bill MORE, a Democratic centrist from Maine, was the only lawmaker to cross the aisle, joining every Republican in opposing the package.


Naomi Jagoda, Mike Lillis and Aris Folley tell us how we got here.

The upshot: Friday's vote caps months of messy infighting between liberal and moderate House Democrats who have jousted over the size, scope and strategy surrounding the multitrillion-dollar package, a cornerstone of Biden’s economic agenda.

The public divisions have helped to drag Biden’s approval numbers underwater and have shadowed the party's efforts to utilize their control of Congress and the White House ahead of the 2022 midterm elections, when they are looking to defend slim majorities in the House and Senate. 


Rubio calls Biden bank watchdog pick a 'communist'

Sen. Marco RubioMarco Antonio RubioRepublicans struggle to save funding for Trump's border wall Rubio: Dropping FARC from terrorist list threatens Colombians, US security This Thanksgiving, skip the political food fights and talk UFOs instead MORE (R-Fla.) on Friday claimed a Soviet-born Biden nominee whose family was nearly eviscerated by Josef Stalin was a communist unfit to serve in the federal government.

In a Friday tweet, Rubio accused Saule Omarova, who Biden nominated to lead the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and who has been a U.S. citizen since 2005, of being a communist.

“Saule Omarova supports abolishing private bank accounts, using govt to bankrupt energy companies & creating a Soviet style “National Investment Authority,” tweeted Rubio, whose parents fled Cuba before Fidel Castro seized control of the country in 1959.

“She supports communist policies & a communist should not be our Comptroller of the Currency.”

The facts: Omarova, a Cornell law professor born in the former Soviet republic of Kazakhstan, served in the Treasury Department under former President George W. Bush. During her Thursday confirmation hearing, she described how she was raised by her grandmother, who was orphaned after her family was sent to Siberia amid Stalin’s purges of the professional class and ethnic minorities.

“I grew up without knowing half of my family. My grandmother herself escaped death twice under the Stalin regime,” Omarova said. “This is what seared in my mind. That's who I am.”



Two more Democrats urge Biden not to pick Powell for Fed chair

Sens. Sheldon WhitehouseSheldon WhitehouseThe Hill's Morning Report - Ins and outs: Powell renominated at Fed, Parnell drops Senate bid On The Money — Biden sticks with Powell despite pressure Senators call for Smithsonian Latino, women's museums to be built on National Mall MORE (D-R.I.) and Jeff MerkleyJeff MerkleyLawmakers call on Olympic committee to press China on human rights abuses Senate Democrats call on Biden to push for COVID-19 vaccine patent waivers at WTO The Hill's Morning Report - Ins and outs: Powell renominated at Fed, Parnell drops Senate bid MORE (D-Ore.) are urging President Biden not to nominate Jerome Powell to serve another term as chairman of the Federal Reserve, warning that his refusal to use the Fed to prepare the economy for the impact of climate change is a major problem.

The Democratic senators join Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenRestless progressives eye 2024 Poll: Harris, Michelle Obama lead for 2024 if Biden doesn't run Biden eyes new path for Fed despite Powell pick MORE (D-Mass.) in trying to steer Biden away from Powell, who was appointed chairman by former President TrumpDonald TrumpFormer defense secretary Esper sues Pentagon in memoir dispute Biden celebrates start of Hanukkah Fauci says lies, threats are 'noise' MORE, and toward picking Lael Brainard, the only Democrat on the central bank’s seven-member board. 

“During his tenure, Chair Powell first ignored climate change and then resisted calls for the Fed to use its tools to fight it, arguing that climate change ‘is really an issue that is assigned to lots of other government agencies, not so much the Fed,’” they said. 

Alexander Bolton tells us why here.

Good to Know

Minority Leader M McConnell (R-Ky.) heads to Majority Leader <span class=Charles SchumerChuck SchumerDemocratic frustration growing over stagnating voting rights bills Schumer mourns death of 'amazing' father Feehery: The honest contrarian MORE (D-N.Y.) office on Thursday, November 18, 2021 to discuss the debt ceiling." width="645" height="363" data-delta="9" />

After taking a hard line and refusing to negotiate with Democrats during the last standoff over the debt limit, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellFive issues that will define the months until the midterms  Key senators to watch on Democrats' social spending bill Republicans seem set to win the midterms — unless they defeat themselves MORE (R-Ky.) is quietly looking for a way to get the issue resolved without another high-profile battle.

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 next week.