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Moment of Truth for Congress on Public Funding, Debt, the Biden Agenda

The US Congress faces a showdown on government spending and debt on Monday, opening a week that could also include action on President Joe Biden’s broad social agenda so Democrats can resolve internal divisions over the package.

Senate to hold procedural vote on Monday evening on legislation that has already been passed by the House of Representatives to fund the US government until December 3 and suspend the nation’s borrowing limit until the end of 2022.

If Republicans block the measure, as planned, Democrats will have to find another way to keep the government in business beyond Thursday, when current funding expires. Lawmakers will also need to figure out how to raise the debt ceiling to avoid the risk of default.

Democrats are keen to avoid such drama as they try to project competence after four years of The chaotic presidency of Republican Donald Trump. The Bipartisan Policy Center said on Friday that the United States The Treasury Department would likely completely exhaust its borrowing power between October 15 and November 4.

Adding to the complexity, House Democrats face vote on $ 1 trillion infrastructure bill passed by the Senate with considerable Republican support on Aug. 10 that will fund projects for roads, bridges, airports, schools and more.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi last month agreed to a request from House moderates to vote on the bill by Monday, but progressives backed down a larger social spending bill of $ 3.5 trillion.

Pelosi said on Sunday the cHamber would vote on the $ 1 trillion infrastructure bill Thursday.

Tomorrow, September 27, we will start the debate on the bipartite infrastructure framework on the floor of the House and vote on it on Thursday, September 30, ”she said in a letter to her fellow Democrats published by her office.

Earlier Sunday, Pelosi had said she would not put the infrastructure bill to a vote until she was sure it would pass, but expressed confidence in her prospects.

Just let me say we’ll pass the bill this week“she told ABC News” This Week “presenter George Stephanopoulos, speaking about legislation that is key to Biden’s economic agenda.

The fate of the Democratic President’s initiatives on everything from healthcare and education to tackling child poverty and climate change, as Democrats grapple with the content and cost of the larger package.

Democrats fight over drug pricing provisions in the social spending plan, which they hope to pass by their weak majorities and without the support of the Republicans. Some moderate Democrats, including Senators Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema say the $ 3.5 trillion price tag is too high.

Democratic leaders insist the measure will be paid for with tax increases on businesses and the wealthy.

Photo credit: REUTERS / Evelyn Hockstein


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