US Senate debate on $3.5 trillion spending plan enters second day – News Vibe24

    US Senate debate on $3.5 trillion spending plan enters second day - Times of India
    Discussions on the $ 3.5 trillion spending plan for President Joe Biden’s top priorities entered the U.S. Senate on Wednesday for a second day, with lawmakers disagreeing on the need for massive spending to fight climate change and poverty.
    After months of negotiations, the Senate passed a $ 1 trillion infrastructure bill in a 69-30 bilateral vote, proposing to make the nation the largest investment in decades on roads, bridges, airports and waterways. But the measure faces an uncertain future in Parliament.
    The Democrats in the Senate then turned to a budget resolution containing spending guidelines for the multi-trillion-dollar monitoring package, which includes provisions to create universal preschool, affordable housing and climate-friendly technologies.
    The bills have been a top priority for Biden, who has sought sweeping change at a time when his Democratic Party is gaining control of both houses of Congress and fears losing control of the 2022 election.
    Democrats plan to push for the package in the coming months, using a process called “budget reconciliation,” which allows them to pass legislation by a simple majority.
    On Tuesday, the Senate launched a “vote-a-rama”, a process that gives senators the opportunity to propose amendments to the budget resolution. It continued early Wednesday. The debate may last for days unless the party leaders agree in a shorter period of time.
    Republicans have accepted the $ 3.5 trillion spending plan. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, who passed the $ 1 trillion infrastructure bill, called the biggest proposal “radical.”
    Dozens of Republican senators also signed a pledge not to vote to increase the nation’s borrowing capacity when it runs out in the fall in a bid to curb Democrat spending plans.
    “They (Democrats) should not expect Republicans to raise the debt ceiling to cover their deficit spending,” Sen. Ron Johnson, a Republican who made the promise, told the Wall Street Journal.
    Failure to raise or suspend the legal debt limit – now at $ 28.5 trillion – could cause the federal government to shut down or default.
    Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen has urged Congress to raise the debt limit in a bilateral vote. On Tuesday, Yellen also approved the launch of the largest spending package, saying the $ 1 trillion infrastructure plan should be continued.
    On Tuesday, Biden praised the 19 Republicans who voted for the $ 1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure measure. “In this bill, we have shown that we can still come together to do great things – important things – for the American people,” he said.
    But it is not clear how soon the House, which has a small democratic majority, will take action.
    House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has repeatedly said her room will not take over the infrastructure bill or the larger spending package until both are handed over, which will require the Democratic leadership to retain its narrow majority in the Congress to get legislation into Biden’s office.
    Leading progressive House Democrats said Tuesday that most progressives will not vote on the bilateral infrastructure bill until the Senate also approves a “strong” second spending measure. This was in contrast to the more moderate Democrats in Parliament, who want a quick vote on the infrastructure bill.
    Polls show that the effort to upgrade America’s infrastructure, which has been forged for months by senators from both parties, is widely popular. The bill includes $ 550 billion in new spending, as well as $ 450 billion in previously approved infrastructure investments.
    Once the budget resolution is approved, Democrats will begin working on the conciliation package for a vote after returning from their summer break in September.


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