US House of Representatives Democrat Pramila Jayapal on Tuesday (19/10) said he felt “increasingly optimistic” about the prospect of reaching an agreement on a large social spending bill after he and his colleagues met with President Joe Biden.
On Tuesday (19/10), Biden was busy meeting congressmen trying to reach agreement on his two trillion-dollar legislative packages. If successful, the law would be a legacy of the successful Biden administration, which expanded social safety net programs and infrastructure spending.
Progressive caucuses have so far been unwilling to pass the Infrastructure Bill unless combined with a massive budget bill that would fund Biden’s campaign promises around climate, inequality and social programs.
Jayapal told reporters at the White House after a meeting with the president that Biden was trying to bring all parties together and agree on a spending bill worth between $1.9 trillion (Rp 26,791 trillion) and $ 2.3 trillion (Rp 32,431 trillion).
That’s much lower than the $3.5 trillion (Rp 49,352 trillion) originally proposed, but Jayapal said progressive groups are trying to keep as many of their priorities in the bill as possible, even though the value is now reduced.
A source said agreement on the two bills could be announced by the middle of this week if all goes well. A second source said the White House hoped an announcement would be made in the coming days. [jm/rd]