POLLING: Voters Blame Republicans in Congress for Overall Lack of Bipartisanship in Washington

POLITICO: McConnell tries to derail Democratic infrastructure strategy

Despite repeatedly acknowledging Democrats’ intentions of passing both a bipartisan infrastructure deal and a reconciliation package with the rest of President Biden’s essential Build Back Better agenda, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and his Republican colleagues are now feigning selective memory loss in yet another bad faith attempt to obstruct the administration. 

The truth is, Republicans have known about Democrats’ two-track strategy for months, and even encouraged President Biden to pass other parts of his agenda in a separate bill:

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell: 

  • “We are anticipating, at some point, getting a reconciliation bill.” [NBC, 6/18/21]

  • “I think the majority leaders indicated there will be a reconciliation effort. I think what they’re wrestling with is, what will it contain?” [Press Conference, 6/15/21]

  • They are in the majority. They don’t need my permission to decide how they want to pursue something.” [Fox News, 5/12/21]
  • Sen. Bill Cassidy: “I cannot control what Democrats do…Even if they end up passing their human infrastructure completely in total, we still would have saved hundreds of billions of dollars relative to their initial request…I think we’ve made progress even if Majority Leader Schumer decides to proceed with a reconciliation bill.” [Fox Business Network, 6/24/21]

  • Sen. Roy Blunt: “My advice to the White House has been, take that bipartisan win, do this in a more traditional infrastructure way and then if you want to force the rest of the package on Republicans in the Congress and the country, you can certainly do that,” [New York Times, 4/8/21]

  • Sens. Capito, Barasso, Blunt, Crapo, Toomey, and Wicker in a memo to President Biden during the first round of negotiations:

    • “As a group, we were explicit that policies unrelated to physical infrastructure do not fit in this package. This is not because we do not value these important issues. We simply believe that these policies should be addressed in separate legislation.” [Politico, 5/27/21]

  • Sen. Rob Portman: “I’m not suggesting Democrats aren’t going to try by reconciliation to do the big tax increases and big spending they’d like to do outside of this, I’m sure they will. But in the meantime, let’s go ahead and get this done.” [CNBC, 6/15/21]