Senate Democrats would like to revive discussions on President Biden’s $1.7 trillion social and climate spending package, the Build Back Better Act, but Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) remains an obstacle.
This week, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) said he’s had recent conversations with Manchin about the House-passed BBB but Manchin disputed the notion that any progress is being made.
“I’m really not going to talk about Build Back Better because I think I’ve been very clear on that,” Manchin told reporters this week. “There is no negotiation going on at this time.”
Schumer had hoped to pass the BBB by Christmas but needs Manchin’s support in the 50-50 Senate. Manchin’s concerns with the BBB are multi-faceted but in the past he has expressed reservations about the rising rate of inflation and specific provisions in the bill like paid family and medical leave.
Schumer said earlier this week that the Senate will vote on the BBB at some point in the near future. “I intend to hold a vote in the Senate on BBB and we’ll keep voting until we get a bill passed,” Schumer said Tuesday. “The stakes are high for us to find common ground.”