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Biden announces "historic" deal, but must still win votes

Thursday's announcement by President Joe Biden was that he and Democrats have agreed to a "historic" framework regarding his comprehensive domestic policy package.

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Biden announces "historic" deal, but must still win votes

He still needs to secure votes from his key colleagues in order to pass the bill, which is now dramatically reduced.

Biden was eager to reach a settlement before he left for the global summits. He made his case to House Democrats privately on Capitol Hill and to the White House in a speech. The White House is now pushing for a robust package of $1.75 trillion in social services and climate change programs that can be passed by the 50-50 Senate.

These fast-moving developments have brought Democrats closer to a hard-fought agreement, but there are still battles as Democrats push to complete the final draft in days and weeks.

Biden exhorted, "Let's get it done!"

He said that the package would fundamentally alter the lives of millions of people. This was something he desperately wanted to do before the summits, in order to prove the world that American democracy still works.

Biden also proposed a bipartisan infrastructure bill that would cost nearly $1 trillion. He claimed that the federal infusion of investments would be a domestic success modeled after those of Franklin Roosevelt or Lyndon Johnson.

According to an anonymous source, Biden stated to the Capitol lawmakers that he needed their votes. The remarks were made to them by Biden who spoke on condition of anonymity.

Final votes won't be called until later. Many lawmakers are disappointed that the revised package has lost top priorities. This is because the president's ambitions have been displaced by the political realities of the narrowly divided Congress.

Some lawmakers and advocates are outraged that the package no longer includes paid family leave or efforts to lower prescription drug prices.

There are still many other priorities in the mix: free prekindergarten to all children, expanded health programs, including a new $35 Billion hearing aid benefit for Medicare patients, and $555 Billion to combat climate change.

A one-year extension to the child care tax credit, which was established during the COVID-19 rescue, and new child care subsidies is also available. If it passes the Senate rules, an additional $100 billion could be added to the package to strengthen the immigration and border processing systems.

Senator Kyrsten Sinema, an Arizona Democratic leader, stated that she was looking forward to seeing this happen.

Joe Manchin, West Virginia's other representative, was more open to compromise: "This is all in control of the House right at this moment."

They have nearly single-handedly reduced both the scope and size of their party's visionary ideas, which is crucial in sealing the deal.

Republicans are still overwhelmingly opposed to the bill, so Biden must rely on the Democrats' narrow majority of votes in Congress to pass the bill.

After months of negotiations, Biden's bill is now in place. It would be the most comprehensive of its kind in a generation and was modeled after New Deal programs. It is the White House's largest ever investment in climate change, and it represents the greatest improvement to the country's healthcare system for more than a decade.

Biden spoke to lawmakers at Capitol about the importance of showing progress before he heads to summits.

He said, "We are at an impasse point." "The rest of world wonders if we can function."

He said that it is not "hyperbole" to predict that the outcome of the U.S. election will determine the House and Senate majorities, and his presidency.

Biden asked for an enthusiastic, spirited vote on his plan at one point," stated Richard Neal (D-Mass).

Over the course of the hour-long meeting, Democratic lawmakers rose to their feet twice and shouted: "Vote! Vote!" said Rep. Gerald Connolly from Virginia.

Biden's proposal would pay for a 5% surtax on income above $10 million per year and a 15% corporate minimum tax. Officials said this was in keeping with his plan to not have any new taxes on people earning less than $400,000 per year. An extra "billionaires tax", however, was not included.

The Trump administration's 2017 tax cuts would be reversed, as well as increased enforcement by the IRS of tax-dodgers to raise revenue for the package. Biden has pledged to pay the entire cost of this plan and not add on to the debt burden.

Legislators and aides warned that the framework was being transformed into a 1,600-page text legislative for review.

Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.), the progressive leader, stated that her caucus supported the framework even though progressive lawmakers tried to delay any further action. She stated that she wanted to see the text as it is, "to avoid any confusion or misunderstandings."

Nancy Pelosi, House Speaker, said that Biden requested the House vote on the $1 trillion infrastructure bill. The bill had already passed the Senate, but got tangled up in discussions over the larger bill. Jayapal stated that she didn't receive an urgent request from Biden, which encouraged progressives to stop the planned Thursday vote.

Pelosi said to lawmakers that the president should be given a vote from Congress when he gets off the plane.

But no votes were scheduled. The progressives withheld their support for the road-and-bridges bill to leverage until they had a commitment from Sinema, Manchin and other senators that they would vote on Biden’s larger package.

Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) said "Hell no" about the bill's passage.

Rep. Cori Bush (D-Mo.) shared her story about making "pennies' at low-wage jobs, struggling to pay child care, and wanting to make sure constituents have better.

"We need both bills for riding together. Bush stated that we don't have the money right now. "I feel a little confused because this wasn't what I expected was coming today."

Instead, Congress extended Dec. 3's deadline for routine transportation funds to Sunday. Without the infrastructure bill, they were at risk of expiring.

These two Democratic senators, who are still holding out, hold immense power and decide whether Biden can fulfill the Democrats' key campaign promises.

Sinema was instrumental in pushing her party to abandon its promise to reverse the Republican tax cuts of 2017. Manchin's resistance to the clean energy plan forced significant cuts, including the elimination of paid family leaves and the imposition work requirements on parents who receive the child care subsidy.

Progressives also achieved one priority: Bernie Sanders, a Vermont Independent,'s proposal to offer hearing aid benefits to Medicare beneficiaries. His ideas to include vision and dental care were not included.

Expanded health care programs are built on the Affordable Care Act and provide subsidies for people to buy insurance policies or coverage in states that have dropped the Obamacare program.

The new package creates political problems in the future. The enhanced child care credit expires next year along with the midterm elections. However, much of the funding for health care will expire in 2025. This makes it a key issue for presidential candidates.

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