Pelosi Rule Vote Gambit Could Make or Break Dem Agenda

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., is pushing for a procedural vote Monday night that could either float, or sink, a large portion of the Democrats’ agenda in Congress.

According to The Hill, Pelosi was expected to call for a rule vote Monday night that would deem the Democrats $3.5 trillion budget as “adopted,” and then take on the bipartisan $1.2 trillion infrastructure plan at a later date.

The move is dicey at best because Pelosi can only lose three Democrats for the measure to fail, possibly derailing the biggest part of what the Democrats and President Joe Biden want.

“The idea of just kind of throwing a bomb at the 11th hour, it just doesn’t seem responsible to the people of this country who expect a legislature that works for them,” said Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., told The Hill, comparing Pelosi’s move to a desperate scoring attempt in football.

There are 10 “centrist” Democrats that supported the bipartisan plan to repair the nation’s roads, rails, airports, and seaports, and want that bill voted on first.

The more liberal arm of the party, however, want either both bills voted on at the same time, or the $3.5 trillion budget reconciliation bill going first because it has most of the items Republicans removed from the bipartisan bill, such as expanded child and healthcare programs, free college tuition, and climate change policies compatible with the Green New Deal.

One of the centrists, Rep. Josh Gottheimer, D-N.J., told The Hill, “the rule [vote] is going down,” and Majority Whip James Clyburn, D-S.C., told reporters he “had no idea” if the needed votes to pass the rule were there.

“The rule is about being in the majority,” House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal, D-Mass., told The Hill. “There’s a long way to go on legislative issues that are going to play out over the next month. But for the moment the argument is over shall the House proceed.”

If passed by the House before the bipartisan deal comes up for a vote, Senate Republicans may bail out, leaving the Democrats to muster all 50 of their votes, plus that of Vice President Kamala Harris to pass the measure.

According to the article, several White House Cabinet members have been working the phones to try and make sure both bills pass.

Both Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., have said they want both bills passed and on their way to President Biden’s desk by October.

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