The Epoch Times is reporting that yesterday the House of Representatives voted to pass a bipartisan $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill. Unfortunately, thirteen Republicans joined with Democrats to pass the bill. Oddly enough, six progressive Democrats—members of the “Squad”—voted against the measure. Evidently the squad has grown–there used to be only four members. Now Cori Bush, a Democrat from Missouri, and Jamaal Bowman, a Democrat from New York, have joined the group.
The article reports:
The final vote was 228-206, with 13 Republicans joining Democrats in support of the bill. The Republicans were Reps. John Katko (R-N.Y.), Andrew Garbarino (R-N.Y.), Nicole Malliotakis (R-N.Y.), Tom Reed (R-N.Y.), Jeff Van Drew (R-N.J.), Chris Smith (R-N.J.), Don Young (R-Alaska), Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.), Fred Upon (R-Mich.), Don Bacon (R-Nebr.), Anthony Gonzalez (R-Ohio), Brian Fitzpatrick (R-Penn.), and David McKinley (R-W.Va.)
…House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) had sought to hold votes on both bills on Friday but was forced to postpone the vote on the Build Back Better bill, after some moderate Democrats said they wanted a least 72 hours to review the text of the bill, and to review the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) and Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) scores on the spending bill to understand the “true cost of the legislation.” They also wanted the Senate to confirm it would not make changes to the bill in the interim period.
The New York Post reports:
In an effort to get the entire Democratic caucus on board, the legislation was further amended on Thursday to change provisions pertaining to drug pricing and the state and local tax deduction (SALT) — a priority for members that represent high-tax states like New York and New Jersey.
Under the latest version of the Build Back Better legislation, the SALT cap would increase from $10,000 to $80,00 through 2030 before returning to $10,000 in 2031.
Drug pricing language was also altered to provide an extra year before Medicare is permitted to negotiate prices on biologics once those drugs hit the market.
The bipartisan infrastructure measure — negotiated by a group of 22 bipartisan lawmakers led by Sinema and Rob Portman (R-Ohio) — includes $550 billion in new spending, with $110 billion set to be allocated toward roads, bridges and other projects; $65 billion toward broadband, $66 billion to be spent on passenger and freight rail, $55 billion for water infrastructure, $39.2 billion for public transit, $47.2 billion for resiliency purposes, $7.5 billion for electric vehicle infrastructure and $21 billion to address pollution.
Note that of the $1.2 trillion spent, only $110 billion goes toward roads, bridges and other projects.
Make no mistake about it, the change in the SALT cap is a tax cut for the rich in Democrat states where taxes are high due to reckless spending. It will cut the amount of revenue coming into the treasury and reward the states that voted for Joe Biden. It causes states with lower taxes to essentially subsidize the higher tax states.
We all remember a reasonable infrastructure bill that was suggested during the Trump administration that Speaker Pelosi refused to pass because she didn’t want President Trump to get credit for it. Now we have a pork-laden bill that includes things that no rational person would call infrastructure. We need to elect people who will be fiscally responsible and put patriotism over party.