‘Perplexing’: Granholm slams Senate Republicans’ infrastructure position

Granholm specifically cited investments in the transmission network, the expansion of nuclear energy initiatives and the loss of jobs in fossil fuels as areas where the GOP could move closer to the White House infrastructure proposal.

“It’s just curious why doesn’t come together anymore,” she said.

Granholm’s remarks come after Biden last Friday rejected Senator Shelley Moore Capito’s (RW.Va.) latest GOP counteroffer, which replaced Senate Republicans’ previous proposal of $ 257 billion in new spending, according to the White House increased by about $ 50 billion.

In an earlier meeting last Wednesday, Biden urged Capito to support $ 1 trillion in new spending after slashing its initial demand from around $ 2.3 trillion to $ 1.7 trillion . Biden and Capito should speak to each other again on Monday.

Senator Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), A key vote on a possible package, said on Sunday that he was confident that a bipartisan deal could be reached. Progressives, however, have urged Biden to continue the so-called reconciliation process that would allow Democrats to pass the bill without Republican votes in the Senate.

In the meantime, the House’s Transport and Infrastructure Committee will begin drafting its own infrastructure bill on Wednesday.

“The President still has hope. Joe Manchin still has hope. We all have hope that it can happen. They talk on Monday. But I can tell you the house will start markup on Wednesday, ”Granholm said on Sunday.

“It’s frustrating that it doesn’t come together anymore,” she added. “But the President’s red line, as you have heard, is that inaction is his red line. So it is acted. We just hope we can see it in a non-partisan way that would be good for the country. ”

Transport Secretary Pete Buttigieg gave a softer assessment of the negotiations on Sunday, but admitted that “honestly, there is still a lot of daylight between us and our Republican friends” on the price and scope of the infrastructure package.

He also nodded to the option of adopting the White House proposal through reconciliation. tells CBS “Face the Nation” that “as our democratic friends remind us, there is another way. But we prefer to do this across parties. ”

But even if Biden ultimately decides to move forward with the legislation without Republican support, “there are 50 Democratic senators who think for themselves,” said Buttigieg, and “you can’t just assume that all of them will go along with it.” . unless we work through it together. “

Trade Minister Gina Raimondo predicted on Sunday that these Senate Democrats, in particular Manchin and moderate Senator Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.), Would support Biden’s proposal should the bipartisan talks fail.

“I think they will. You are very committed, both of you. They want to do the right thing, ”she says said ABC’s “This Week”.

In contrast to Granholm, Raimondo also tried to tone down the urgency of the negotiations in the coming days, arguing that this week “not” [a] do-or-die “timeframe for a possible compromise between Biden and the Senate Republicans.

“Legislative practice is a lot more art than science,” she said, and “there is no set deadline” for the infrastructure talks.

“We won’t do this forever,” added Raimondo. “But at the moment there are good faith efforts on both sides and we will continue our work trying to reach a bipartisan agreement.”

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