REALITY CHECK: SENATE GOP HAS BEEN TANKING A BIPARTISAN INFRASTRUCTURE DEAL SINCE NEGOTIATIONS BEGAN

“If you are claiming that Democrats are tanking the Gang of 10 infrastructure deal, please name the ten Republican senators who have committed to supporting the package. I’ll wait.” 
—  Zac Petkanas, Invest In America Action Senior Advisor

Today, Senate Minority Whip John Thune once again cast doubt on his support of a bipartisan infrastructure deal between the Gang of 10, saying:

  • “There’s a lot of spending in that space” that “could be a problem,” in reference to clean energy investments that would create millions of good-paying jobs. Thune is the latest in a string of Republicans who have undermined the negotiations.

In fact, key Senate Republicans have been throwing cold water on this deal since negotiations began, raising skepticism that any deal could have gotten 10 Republican votes: 

  • Sen. Thune: “It’s hard for me to see a scenario where even 10 Republicans would vote for something that gets very far beyond where Shelley’s discussions were with the White House.”
  • Sen. McConnell: “I think you could best say I’m in listening mode.”
  • Sen. Cramer told NBC News that the new negotiations group will have trouble getting 10 Republican votes, claiming “Our negotiator as a conference was rejected.”
  • Sen. Barrasso: “We’re at a point where to put a bipartisan program together with Republican votes, we’re as high as we go.”
  • Sen. Romney:
    • “We haven’t got 60 people yet.” 
    • Romney told reporters, “he can speak for himself,” when asked if Sen. McConnell supports his deal.
  • Sen. Blunt:
    • “It’s a challenging path to go down. Say if you’ve got a group of 5 Republicans and 5 Democrats, it means you’ve only got 5 Republicans.”
    • Blunt said that a deal between the 10 senators negotiating would be “a pretty low-entry step to a deal.”
  • Sen. Collins: “I would not say that we have the leaders on board or we have started negotiating with the White House.”
  • Sen. Cassidy“We’d have to, again, have our colleagues, whichever party you’re in, buy into it.”
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