Alongside the bipartisan infrastructure negotiations, Senate Democrats are taking initial steps toward passing an infrastructure package through the budget reconciliation process, which only requires a majority vote of 50 in the Senate. The White House endorsed this dual-track approach, and senior administration officials met with Democratic leaders in Congress to discuss plans for budget reconciliation Wednesday night.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) said they plan to get both a bipartisan infrastructure bill and a budget resolution, the first step of the reconciliation process, through Congress in July.
Last week, Leader Schumer and Senate Budget Committee Chair Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) met with Democrats on the Senate Budget Committee about crafting a resolution. They discussed plans to include up to $6 trillion in spending, incorporating aspects from both of President Biden’s infrastructure proposals, the American Jobs Plan and American Families Plan.
While the $6 trillion figure is welcome for progressive Senators, moderate Senate Democrats have already indicated they will not or are unlikely to support a price tag that large. To pass a budget reconciliation package, all Democrats must support it in the Senate.