On Monday, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer responded to Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin’s opposition to using reconciliation to pass infrastructure legislation.
Schumer said that if his party can’t pass the legislation in a bipartisan fashion, they will figure out how to pass it, and “reconciliation is on the table,” – meaning they would pass the bill with a simple majority, VP Kamala Harris being the tie-breaking vote.
Schumer made his remarks on CNN’s “OutFront.”
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Schumer told host Erin Burnett, “We need big, bold action. That’s what America needs. We want to do as much of that as we can in a bipartisan way, and we’re proceeding to do that.”
The Senate Majority Leader then referred to the bipartisan group of 20 senators, seeking compromise between the parties and of which Manchin is a part.
“The water bill that will be on the floor this week came out of committee unanimously,” Schumer said. “And it’s quite similar to what the Republican — the ten Republican members of the gang of 20 proposed.”
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Schumer continued, “We will try to do as much of what we can in a bipartisan way. And that’s good and that’s working in a good way.”
“But if there are needs of the people that can’t be done in a bipartisan way, our caucus will put our heads together, we will figure out how to get it done,” Schumer said.
“Certainly, no decisions have been made yet, but reconciliation is on the table,” Schumer insisted.
On April 5th, CNBC reported that Schumer could pass bills without a single Republican vote, but a spokesman for Schumer said the Senate Majority Leader had not decided what path to choose at the time.
The problem is, Manchin is a Democrat. Schumer would need at least one Republican to flip.
“Democrats have not decided whether to use the third attempt at reconciliation,” CNBC reported.
“No decisions have been made on a legislative path forward” and “some parameters still need to be worked out,” but the opinion “is an important step forward,” a Schumer spokesman said.
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