Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) has weaponized the August recess to fast track the senators into voting for the so-called infrastructure bill.
Schumer is using the calendar to his advantage by keeping senators in Washington for part of their August recess to pressure them into fast-tracking the so-called infrastructure bill vote, according to Politico. Senators are scheduled to leave for their home states to do work, meet with constituents, and possible vacation plans.
Schumer is banking on senators from both sides to quickly get tired and want to go back home to dramatically speed up the Senate to vote in the legislation and possibly speed up the all-night vote-a-rama. The Senate is deadlocked with the 50-50, wafer-thin Democrat majority. However, Vice President Kamala Harris, a Democrat, can break a tie, unlike the House with no tie-breaking vote.
Senators are reportedly keeping a close eye on Schumer and when he will schedule the vote to see how much of the five-week recess the senators will have to spend dealing with the so-called infrastructure bill in Washington.
Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), who was one of the Republicans to vote to invoke cloture on the bill, told Politico, “Getting home is always a good motivator. … People are going to get irritated and sick of each other.”
Sen. Jon Tester (D-MT), who has been a member of the group negotiating, said, “We’ve lost at least a week. And maybe two. … It just depends. [The calendar] could be our worst friend. We could lose our whole damn break. I’m prepared to stay here.” However, he is in no hurry to get home. The crops on Tester’s farm have reportedly been destroyed by weather.
In regard to Schumer’s tactics, Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) told Politico, “He’s going to grind us down, there’s no question about it. … I take him at his word. It’s going to be unpleasant.”
Recently, Breitbart News reported that over the weekend, several senators, including Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), were at an event on Sen. Joe Manchin’s houseboat. Graham on Monday announced that he tested positive for Chinese coronavirus despite being fully vaccinated. This could potentially jeopardize voting in the Senate if another senator tests positive down with the Chinese coronavirus.