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Tag: biden agenda

Alabama Republican Voted No, But Praises Himself For Local Highway Funding

Rep. Gary Palmer (R-AL) on Monday night touted "critical funding" that President Joe Biden's infrastructure bill provided for a highway in his district — even though he voted against the funding.

Palmer bragged about $369 million his district will receive from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, the $1.2 billion infrastructure bill Biden signed into law on Monday.

Palmer wants credit for funding the bill provides for the Birmingham Northern Beltline, described on its official website as "a 52-mile, six lane corridor," which is under construction in his district."Funding the Northern Beltline has consistently been one of my top priorities," Palmer said in a statement Monday night, after Biden signed the bill. "Birmingham is currently one of the largest metropolitan areas in the country without a complete beltline around it. Completing the Northern Beltline will benefit the entire region and enhance economic development and employment opportunities."

But Palmer did not vote for the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, which, aside from providing funding for highway projects such as the Birmingham Northern Beltline, also includes funding to improve aging bridges and roads, expand public transportation, and replace water pipes contaminated by lead.

When the bill passed on November 6, Palmer tweeted, "The Democrats' recklessly expensive infrastructure bill finally passed tonight after weeks of disarray among their caucus."

The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act has caused an uproar within the House GOP.

While nearly every House Republican voted against the bill, 13 GOP lawmakers voted for it, and that's angered a group of right-wing House Republicans who want to punish the 13 by stripping them of their committee assignments.

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) had been saying since long before the vote on the bill that she would help fund primary challenges against any Republicans who voted in favor of it. Afterward, she made public the phone numbers of Republicans who had voted in favor and defended the move as they started to receive threats: "The calls will continue and primaries will ensue. Republicans in the House and the Senate need to learn a lesson."

Those among the 13 who say they have received threats include Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI), who shared on CNN a voicemail he'd received that said, "I hope you f—king die, I hope your family f—king dies, I hope everyone in your f—king staff dies."

Politico reported that one of the 13 lawmakers who voted for the bill was getting so many angry calls that they redirected them to Greene's office.

Former President Donald Trump has also vowed to endorse primary challengers against them. On November 15, he endorsed John Gibbs, a challenger to Rep. Peter Meijer (R-MI) with a history of making offensive comments against Muslims, LGBTQ people, and others and promoting QAnon and other conspiracy theories.

Palmer's bragging about obtaining funding provided in a bill he voted against is not unprecedented.

Republicans have also bragged about funding included in the COVID-19 relief package enacted in March that they tried to block.

And on November 8, Sen. Rick Scott (R-FL), who chairs the National Republican Senatorial Committee, said he couldn't guarantee that GOP lawmakers who voted against the infrastructure bill wouldn't tout the good provisions within it.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.

House Republicans Savaging Each Other Over Infrastructure Vote

Shortly after 13 House Republicans joined 215 Democrats last week to pass a $1 trillion infrastructure bill, GOP lawmakers went to war with each other.

Some House radicals—who are apparently the dominant force in the GOP caucus—labeled the measure "socialist" and called their 13 colleagues "traitors." Presumably, that went for Senate Republicans, too, after they helped negotiate the bill and about 40 percent of their caucus voted for it.

The pettiest man alive, Donald Trump, groused that "Old Crow" Mitch McConnell had voted for it while being "incapable" of delivering a similar bill during Trump's tenure. McConnell, in turn, called the Biden bill a "godsend" to his state.

Republicans are still warring over the bill even as a new Washington Post-ABC News poll shows that 63 percent of Americans support the bill while just 32 percent oppose it.

The survey question was very simple: Do you support or oppose the federal government spending one trillion dollars on roads, bridges, and other infrastructure?

And yes, nearly two-thirds of respondents said they did support the trillion-dollar investment in roads, bridges, rural broadband, and more, while a fringey 32 percent opposed the spending.

The poll—entirely in line with polling of the bipartisan measure over the last several months—highlights that while the American people still broadly support infrastructure investments to benefit everyone, congressional Republicans have become so extreme, they are inciting death threats against their own members for giving the voters what they want.

In the Republican Party, you can no longer do broadly popular things if it in any way benefits your opponents. Passing good things for your constituents is treasonous if it also helps the other party and their constituency. In other words, backing anything that benefits everyone is an act of treason.

Republicans are still at each others' throats over the passage of the popular legislation. During a House GOP conference meeting Monday, Rep. Dan Bishop of North Carolina filed a resolution to strip Rep. John Katko of New York of being the ranking member on the Homeland Security Committee.

But that was relatively mild compared to the screaming match that broke out between Rep. Chip Roy of Texas and Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy of California, according to CNN reporter Melanie Zanona.

Roy was lamenting that he'll be on the hook to explain to voters in his district why they should support Republicans when GOP representatives just handed Democrats a big infrastructure win.

"McCarthy then got up and shot back that he's had to explain to voters many times votes that Roy has taken," according to Zanona.

As Zanona put it: "House Republicans are more angry at the GOP lawmakers who voted for infrastructure than at Paul Gosar for posting a video depicting violence against Dems." Gosar's video depicted him executing Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, to be exact.

But, yes, exactly. In today's GOP, bipartisanship is more unforgivable than fomenting violence against your opponents.

Only 13 House Republicans Support Infrastructure Bill

The House of Representatives passed the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act on Friday night by a vote of 228-206, two months after the Senate approved the bill on a bipartisan vote.

A total of 200 Republicans voted against the bipartisan $550 billion infrastructure investment package, along with six progressive Democrats, the latter of whom felt the deal did not go far enough.

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New Jobs Report Confirms Massive Employment Growth Under Biden

The nation's economy added 531,000 jobs in October, according to Friday's report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The unemployment rate dropped to 4.6 percent — down from 6.3 percent when President Joe Biden took office in January.

A month ago, Republicans attacked Biden when initial jobs numbers for September showed only 194,000 jobs added.

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GOP Leadership Opposes Paid Family Leave In Biden Bill

Republicans on the House Ways and Means Committee on Wednesday released a memo laying out their opposition to Democrats' efforts to include paid family leave in the $1.75 billion Build Back Better spending plan, saying that protecting businesses is more important than letting people have time to recover from birth or take care of their infants.

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Manchin Enrages Democrats With Latest Rebuke Of 'Build Back Better' Bill

Reprinted with permission from Alternet

As President Joe Biden is overseas working with foreign leaders to mend fences ripped apart by his predecessor while trying to position the United States as the leader in the climate change fight for the future of the planet, Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) decided to inject himself into the news cycle, not by issuing a tweet or a statement or even a remark to a reporter, but by holding a press conference.

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If Biden's Program Fails, Who Deserves The Blame?


Enormous, highly popular public investments of nearly three trillion dollars are awaiting imminent action on Capitol Hill. Despite the drama of clashing caucuses and egos among the Democrats, it seems that in the end they will come together for an historic achievement. Yet there is a good deal of punditry about the consequences should President Joe Biden's signature bills remain stalled and potentially expire.

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