House Speaker Nancy Pelosi stated Sunday that she expected the final price tag for Democrats' budget reconciliation package to be lower than the $3.5 trillion proposed price tag. This signaled that a vote on an infrastructure bill might be delayed.
WASHINGTON DC - September 24: U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D. CA) speaks at an... [+] event titled Building Back Better For Women at the East Front Steps, U.S Capitol, September 24, 2021, Washington, DC. The House Democrats held a press conference about the "Women's Health Protection Act" which will be voted upon in the House following the news conference. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images). Getty Images
The Key Facts
Pelosi stated in an ABC This Week interview, that it seemed obvious that the final price tag would be lower than $3.5 trillion following negotiations with moderates and determinations by the Senate parliamentarians about what can be included within a reconciliation bill. Pelosi didn't say what spending could be reduced, but she did mention that some social programs could have their lengths cut. She also mentioned spending on climate change and child care as potential areas for discussion. Pelosi stated that all Democrats, even those who favor less spending, support President Joe Biden's vision. This claim was confirmed by Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D.N.J.), who claimed that the length of some social programs could be shortened. She also pointed out areas such as climate change, child care, and early childhood education as potential areas for discussion. Pelosi stated that the timing of the vote on the $1.2 billion infrastructure bill, which is on track to fail, was not decided by her. However, she said that she will vote for it when she has the votes.
Democrats spent months trying to reach a compromise on two Biden bills: the reconciliation package which will significantly expand social programs and raise taxes on corporations and the richest Americans; and the infrastructure bill which focuses on roads and bridges and waterways and public transit. It is mostly paid for using old coronavirus relief money.
What to Watch
Nearly every Democrat in Congress must vote yes to the reconciliation bill to ensure it passes, with a margin of three votes in the House and zero in the Senate. This includes Senators. Sens. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), and Kyrsten Sinema, (D-Ariz.) both stated that they opposed a $3.5 trillion price tag.