Tiger Beat on the Potomac email thingie, just now:
House Democratic leaders confirmed this morning that they won’t be delaying the Sept. 27 vote on the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill — even though the party’s larger $3.5 trillion reconciliation package won’t likely be ready to go by then. This is a huge win for moderates in both chambers. That effectively decouplesthe two bills, officially spiking the so-called “two-track” process that leadership hoped would enable passage of both while keeping the party united.
“We will be putting [the BIF] on the floor on the 27th, that’s next Monday,” House Majority Leader STENY HOYER told reporters in a rather newsy pen-and-pad this morning, though he also noted that the vote could slip one day. As for the reconciliation package, the Maryland Democrat said the House will move “as soon as it’s ready” — though no one seems to know when that will be.
The obvious big follow-up question here: What will progressives do?Several high-profile members on the left are almost certainly going to vote against this thing — some, like Rep. ALEXANDRIA OCASIO-CORTEZ (D-N.Y.), have made their unhappiness with this new process abundantly clear. But the question is how many, and can leadership — and President JOE BIDEN — convince enough to go along with this new plan?
In a closed-door caucus meeting this morning, Democratic leaders implored their members to stick together. But that’s easier said than done — especially when House progressives view the BIF vote as their best leverage to force moderate Democrats to support the reconciliation package.
Hoyer in his pen-and-pad pushed back on that argument, saying that he hoped “every Democrat votes for both bills.” “I don’t agree with the judgement of those who believe that it would somehow compel the moderate wing of the caucus to be more supportive,” he added.
Tiger Beat is framing this as a win for Sinema (it’s in the subject line of the email!), but it sounds like a loss to us.