House Is Finally Ready to Vote on 2 Massive Bills

Votes on social spending, infrastructure bills expected Friday
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 5, 2021 4:44 AM CDT
House to Vote Friday on 2 Big Biden Bills
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, walks with reporters at the Capitol,, Thursday, Nov. 4, 2021.   (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Days after a stinging defeat in Virginia, Democrats are trying to move forward quickly with President Biden's agenda. Sources tell the Hill that after a long day of meetings Thursday, House Democrats are planning to vote Friday on a massive social spending bill as well as the infrastructure package that the Senate passed in a bipartisan vote months ago. The sources say a debate and vote on the Build Back Better Act will begin at 8am, followed by a vote on the $1 trillion infrastructure plan.

The social spending bill—which now runs at 2,135 pages—is around half the size of the original $3.5 trillion package. While most progressive House Democrats now support it, there is still opposition from centrists in the House as well as the Senate, AP reports. Five House centrists are calling for a full budgetary assessment before the vote. The House version has restored a proposal for paid family leave. That plan and a recently added proposal for work permits for undocumented immigrants are seen as unlikely to make into the final version of the bill approved by both the House and the Senate.

The plan to vote Friday follows what the Washington Post calls an "all-out campaign" from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to "wrangle sufficient support in the narrowly divided chamber." Lawmakers say they're glad to be voting after weeks of delays caused by internal divisions. "I’m ready to go—most people are ready to go," says Democratic Rep. Tom Malinowski. "If we wait until absolutely everybody is in agreement at precisely the same moment, I worry that we’re going to be waiting forever." (Read more spending bill stories.)

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