AOC: Radical Left Wants a Reconciliation Vote Before ‘Bipartisan’ Infrastructure Can Move Forward

WASHINGTON, DC - SEPTEMBER 21: Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) arrives for a news conference to introduce legislation that would give the Department of Health and Human Services the power to impose a federal eviction moratorium in the interest of public health, on Capitol Hill September 21, 2021 in Washington, DC. …
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Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) told reporters Friday the radical left wants the Senate to vote on the $3.5 trillion reconciliation package before the House votes on the $1.2 “bipartisan” infrastructure bill.

When Ocasio-Cortez was asked if a Senate framework would suffice instead of a Senate vote on the $3.5 trillion reconciliation package, she shook her head and said, “we need a vote.”

“We need to be real,” Ocasio-Cortez continued. “Are we going to deliver universal pre-K to this country or not? Are we going to expand health care to our seniors and include vision and dental or not? Are we going to invest in housing… or not? That’s what we need to know.”

Ocasio-Cortez’s comments seem to be similar to Rep. Pramila Jayapal’s (D-WA), who tweeted Friday morning she still wants certain provisions met in the reconciliation package.

“I stand with the families who need child care, health care, housing, education, and more.” Jayapal said.

According to Friday’s Politico Playbook, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) offered a $2.1 trillion reconciliation package to the House Democrats, which includes items such as child care, paid leave, health care, and global warming.

Yet not all the items the far-left wanted were reportedly included in Pelosi’s offer. Items that were void in the deal appear to be free community college tuition, subsidized housing, and Medicare expansion to offer dental, vision, and hearing benefits.

Pelosi reportedly offered the smaller reconciliation package to the radical left due to Sens. Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), who oppose any deal worth $3.5 trillion. That opposition was ramped up Thursday when a signed document leaked, which revealed a secret agreement between Manchin and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY).

The signed deal stipulates the reconciliation package’s topline number would be $1.5 trillion with a deadline of October 1. “Senator Manchin does not guarantee that he will vote for the final reconciliation legislation if it exceeds the conditions outlined in this agreement,” the signed agreement says.

The lower $1.5 trillion agreement between the two senators was not known to Pelosi until this week. “She [Pelosi] had no knowledge of that until this week,” Rep. Debbie Dingell (D-MI) told CNN.

But the leaked Document did not force Manchin to backdown. “I’m still on $1.5 [trillion] guys, I’ve been on 1.5 and I’m going to make sure that people understand there’s an awful lot of good,” Manchin confirmed Thursday. “We can help a lot of people, children on the front end seniors on the back end, a lot of good things.”

Manchin also suggested Thursday the far-left “should elect more liberals” if they want a more expensive package. And when a PBS reporter asked Manchin what he “thinks about that possibly [of] tanking the infrastructure deal,” Manchin replied that is the House’s decision.

“That’s their decision,” he said.

Follow Wendell Husebø on Twitter @WendellHusebø 

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