GOP Senators Support Infrastructure Bill They Negotiated, Wait No They Don't, Just Kidding They Do, Wait ...
A few days ago, President Joe Biden announced that a bipartisan deal had been reached for infrastructure. But the GOP was hoping this meant Democrats would stop pursuing any other separate infrastructure bill. And even though the White House clarified this, Republicans raced to see who could Lucy-with-the-football the deal first, because of all the betrayal. (Politico Playbook reports this morning that the GOP "rebellion" has mostly settled down, at least for now.)
Of course none of this tyranny of the minority would be possible if
self-appointed king Senator Joe Manchin would use the leverage he has on Republicans, rather than his own party, as Jonathan Karl on ABC's "This Week" pointed out:
Manchin doesn't really have a good explanation for why he doesn't use his leverage to extract concessions from Repu… https://t.co/u4pLLOGtZr— Aaron Rupar (@Aaron Rupar) 1624803698.0
If you watch that clip, you can tell by Manchin's stammering and dodging that the thought of using his leverage to get things from Republicans rather than take away things from Democrats never entered his mind.
Manchin complained about all the attention he seems to personally seek out, saying he "doesn't wish this on anybody." Cry us a river. But because Manchin apparently can't wield power responsibly, the GOP is taking advantage. Take Louisiana GOP Senator Bill Cassidy on NBC's "Meet The Press":
WATCH: @SenBillCassidy says “there is bipartisan opposition to the non-hard infrastructure portion of the bill.”… https://t.co/te2DRxITL8— Meet the Press (@Meet the Press) 1624807506.0
Republicans shouldn't be shocked that Democrats didn't just stop all progress because of a tentative deal. It was never a secret what Democrats wanted to do. Whether Dems do another bill through reconciliation isn't up to Cassidy or any other Republican. If he thinks the bipartisan deal is good he should vote for it, and stop trying to set up excuses for why their future betrayal is justified. But of course, Republicans can't be trusted. Until Biden signs it, they are liable to tank the bipartisan compromise they negotiated, just for political points.
GOP Senator John Barrasso made this clear to Maria Bartiromo on Fox News's "Sunday Morning Futures":
BARRASSO: [T]here are a lot of Republicans, every Republican, who say that there's no way they are gonna support this first bipartisan bill if it is in any way linked and connected to this much bigger basically freight train heading towards socialism.
BARTIROMO: So [Senator] Lindsey Graham says he's out. He's no longer voting YES. Are you no longer voting YES?
Do we have a deal? Or do we not have a deal?
BARRASSO: I talked to a number of members of the bipartisan group. They are all reluctant now to move forward. They're gonna need more assurances from the president that there is no link, no connection to between the bipartisan bill and this bill that the Democrats want to do.
It's not shocking Lindsey Graham is out. I would expect nothing less from that parasitic assclown. But Barrasso, being the third ranking member in the Senate GOP, is as obstructionist as Mitch McConnell. This idea that they needed any excuse to block progress is laughable.
We guess we'll just see what happens. As we said, Politico Playbook reports that the Republican "rebellion" has died for now and they are satisfied with Biden's clarification that he definitely supports the bipartisan bill that just got negotiated:
On Sunday three of the five Republicans who negotiated it — MITT ROMNEY (Utah), BILL CASSIDY (La.) and ROB PORTMAN (Ohio) — made it clear that the president's walkback was good enough for them. So does that mean it will pass? Too early to tell.
You know, until or unless something upsets them again. What an enjoyable ride they're taking us on!
Have a week!
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Your friendly neighborhood Puerto Rican Political Freelance Writer for @wonkette. Pop Culture observer, Amateur Movie reviewer & Comics fan. Former Active Duty Marine. All opinions are mine only.