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Joe Biden hits accelerator on historic US infrastructure spending bid

WASHINGTON: President Joe Biden is set to make a rare visit to Congress on Wednesday to bolster his Democratic Party in a historic, high-wire bid to replace the United States with trillions of dollars in infrastructure spending.
Biden, 78, is due for lunch with Senate Democrats and, when he returns to the White House, Democrats and Republicans to meet with state governors and mayors to discuss “significant investments” according to his public schedule .
The president and his allies have stepped up to the accelerator in hopes of passing two big spending packages within the next few months.
Biden has surprised many with the scale of his desire for major government intervention, which he is subtly but clearly branding as a revival of Franklin D. Roosevelt, who led the United States into the Great Depression in the 1930s. was pulled out of.
With trillions of post-coronavirus pandemic stimulus spending already out the door, Biden now wants to seize the momentum for infrastructure investment, which he argues will turn everything from creaking bridges to inadequate public education.
Because many Republican lawmakers are in favor of some infrastructure spending, at least when it comes to the “hard” version like roads and bridges, Biden is also using his campaign to show that he is divided in Washington. Mass extinctions can achieve bipartisanship.
In a balancing act that could make or break the presidency this summer, Biden is negotiating a plan to spend about $1.2 trillion that would include Republicans, as well as targeting “soft” infrastructure such as education. Wale is pursuing a much larger version, which will be supported exclusively by Democrats.
The challenge of overcoming the toxic Republican-Democratic animosity lies ahead in the wake of Donald Trump’s presidency.
Biden also needs to thread the needle in his own party.
Democrats have middle-of-the-road figures, such as Senator Joe Manchin, who hails largely from the Republican state of West Virginia, to firebrand, self-proclaimed socialist Senator Bernie Sanders.
In a breakthrough late Tuesday, top Democrats in the Senate announced they had agreed to a second infrastructure package price tag of $3.5 trillion.
This differs from Sanders’ proposal to spend $6 trillion.
However, at $3.5 trillion, it would already be historic and Democrats said it ticked off all top priorities, including fighting climate change and promoting social welfare for the poor. By comparison, the $3.5 trillion European economic powerhouse is not far from Germany’s overall annual GDP.
“Every major program that President Biden has asked of us is funded in a robust way,” said Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, a key Biden aide and the driving force behind rapid timetables for both infrastructure packages.
Democrats aim to get this big deal passed through a so-called budget proposal, a technical maneuver that would allow them to bypass the need for Republican support.
Democrats, who have only a razor-thin majority in Congress and require some Republican support for most bills, used the same procedural steps in March to roll out Biden’s $1.9 trillion pandemic relief package without Republican support. was to pass.


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