A bipartisan group of senators came to an agreement with President Biden on infrastructure. After announcing and praising it, Biden then threatened to veto it if he didn’t get more.
President Biden and a group of bipartisan senators announced they reached a deal on a $1 trillion infrastructure bill Thursday.
- Within hours of coming together with a handful of GOP senators on the bill, Biden threatened to veto it if it wasn’t accompanied by a companion bill, passed by the controversial reconciliation method, containing Democratic Party wish list items the Senate GOP strenuously objected to.
- That threat has already faced condemnation from Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and others, who said Biden was “caving” to the far left.
- Despite his veto threat, announcements like these cement Biden’s reputation as a “Washington careerist schooled in the ways of compromise” according to an analysis by the Associated Press.
- CNN’s coverage framed the announcement as a triumph for Biden, which was “carefully choreographed” while it leaves Senate Republicans twisting in the wind, trying to decide “whether to support the bipartisan deal” despite the fact that Democrats can push a larger bill, or a supplemental, through the reconciliation process.
- The Washington Post accidentally showed the left’s cards, acknowledging that this bill, while spending far less than what the Biden administration proposed, will still meet several key goals, particularly on electric vehicle infrastructure and road, rail, and transit spending.
- The New York Times lauded Biden’s efforts at bipartisan compromise, quoting him as saying “It’s hard but it’s necessary, and it can get done”, while noting it leaves “large swaths of the president’s economic proposals” unfunded.
- OANN highlighted the compromise bill’s lack of any provisions that raise taxes as a positive, while noting Biden turning his back on the compromise just a few hours later if it’s not followed up by the items the bipartisan group could not agree on.
- Newsmax highlighted opposition to the bill already growing, quoting Sen. Bernie Sanders on SiriusXM saying he won’t support it if it’s not coupled with “a major reconciliation bill” that addresses climate change, Medicare expansion, among other issues.
- Eschewing politics and policy completely and embracing juvenility, RedState highlighted an odd moment during the announcement in which Vice President Kamala Harris was seen stalking in the background as Biden and the ten senators spoke to the press, a scene reminiscent of the HBO comedy VEEP.
If bipartisanship were dead, this deal would never have happened. But Biden’s threat to veto the compromise, just hours after the announcement, if it was not accompanied by the long list of policy items that Republicans would never agree to in any format is not just a misstep. It signals to Congressional Republicans that Biden cannot be trusted as an honest negotiator. They came to an agreement, and Biden himself said that neither side got everything they wanted. Why would he potentially blow it all up in less than a day by demanding he get everything he wants?
As President Bush once attempted to say, “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.”
© Dallas Gerber, 2021