Biden floats $2 trillion price tag social spending package, pushing for cuts to salvage his economic plans

President Joe Biden. Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP
Biden advised progressives to lower the price for the party's reconciliation bill.

Henry Cuellar, a representative of the president, told reporters that he expects a price between $1.9 trillion and $2 trillion.

Biden also supported progressive calls for infrastructure and social spending bills to be pushed together.

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President Joe Biden proposed a $2 trillion price tag on a social spending program that contained the bulk of his economic agenda. He was trying to broker a compromise among the party's warring factions in an effort to get his agenda through the finish line with thin Democratic majorities.

Biden said Friday that progressive Democrats need to lower expectations regarding the cost of the party's highly-debated spending bill. He also supported their demand for a dual-track strategy to approve both the infrastructure bill and social spending plans simultaneously.

According to Politico, the president asked his fellow Democrats for support for a total cost between $1.9 trillion to $2.3 trillion on the spending bill that was once estimated to cost $3.5 Trillion.

Texas Representative Henry Cuellar told reporters that Biden believed the final reconciliation figure would be $2 trillion. Cuellar said that the president had "basically linked together" the fates of the packages.

Rep. Jamie Raskin, Maryland, hinted at the final terms of a deal at a separate meeting. He told reporters that he is still "excited" about universal daycare, extending child tax credit and cutting tuition at community college.

Raskin stated that "Maybe not all can be funded for 10 year, maybe it will be a shorter period of time." "But we will be able develop these programs and make a promise to the American people."

Biden's visit is a last-ditch effort by progressives to get moderates and progressives on the same page. This comes after Nancy Pelosi, House Speaker, pulled a vote for her bipartisan infrastructure bill Thursday evening. They are demanding a bigger social spending plan to combat the climate emergency, secure affordable childcare, and tuition-free community colleges before moving on to the traditional infrastructure package.

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However, intraparty fighting this week has stalled Biden's economic agenda. Politico reported that Biden stated to lawmakers Friday at the meeting that the infrastructure bill would not be passed unless there was an agreement on the next piece.

According to reports, the president stressed that even a bill costing less than $3.5 trillion can make historic investments.

Pelosi made a big bet earlier in the week by telling the caucus that the infrastructure bill needed to be passed, even though it was still far from being approved by the Senate. Given that there is still no agreement on the final price tag for the larger anti poverty bill, she said Democrats had to make "difficult decisions".

Biden's economic agenda has been put at risk by the California lawmaker's plan. Progressive Democrats have pledged to sink the infrastructure bill if there is no reconciliation on the spending bill.

Although party leaders hope to secure the $2.1 trillion deal, Rep. Joe Manchin (a moderate Democrat) confirmed Thursday that he will not vote for a bill with a cost greater than $1.5 trillion.

Biden insists that Democrats can unite behind both the measures to improve the nation's infrastructure and strengthen its social safety net. Biden stated to reporters that it doesn't matter if it takes six minutes, six days, or six weeks. "We're going to get it done."

Business Insider has the original article.