Lindsey Graham Bails on Biden's Infrastructure Bill, Calls it GOP 'Suicide Mission'

Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) has said he will not support President Joe Biden's infrastructure bill, despite a bipartisan agreement that was announced at the White House on Thursday.

Politico's "Playbook" newsletter reported on Friday morning that Graham was not backing the deal because the small infrastructure bill is set to be linked to a larger reconciliation bill.

"If he's gonna tie them together, he can forget it!" Graham. "I'm not doing that. That's extortion! I'm not going to do that. The Dems are being told you can't get your bipartisan work product passed unless you sign on to what the left wants, and I'm not playing that game."

Graham was one of 11 Republicans to sign up to a bipartisan infrastructure framework, which appeared to show a bill could get enough support to overcome the filibuster.

Graham told Politico that the five Republican senators who negotiated with Biden on Thursday had not informed him about the plan to link the infrastructure bill and a reconciliation bill and said that those Republicans may not have known about it.

"Most Republicans could not have known that," Graham said. "There's no way. You look like a f*cking idiot now."

"I don't mind bipartisanship, but I'm not going to do a suicide mission," Graham said.

At least 10 Republican votes will be needed in the Senate to reach the 60 votes required to overcome the filibuster. Graham's decision could spell trouble for the bill of the five other GOP senators who signed up to the infrastructure framework also refuse to support Biden's plan.

Biden and the bipartisan group of senators announced the infrastructure deal on Thursday outside the White House. The deal involves a $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill and Biden explained there would also be another measure to fund what Democrats have described as "human infrastructure," according to Reuters.

Democrats wanted human infrastructure measures—which would include items like home health care and child care—in the infrastructure bill, but Republicans argued the bill should deal with more traditional forms of infrastructure.

Under the plans announced on Thursday, Democrats would introduce a second measure to fund their human infrastructure proposals and pass it using the budget reconciliation process, which would allow them to overcome the filibuster and not require Republican votes. This is the same method they used to pass the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan.

"I expect that in the coming months this summer, before the fiscal year is over, that we will have voted on this bill—the infrastructure bill—as well as voted on the budget resolution," Biden told reporters on Thursday.

"But if only one comes to me, I'm not signing it. It's in tandem," he said.

Newsweek has asked Senator Lindsey Graham and the White House for comment.

6/25/21 7.42am ET: This article has been updated to include more information.

 Lindsey Graham Speaks During a Confirmation Hearing
Senate Judiciary Committee member Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) shouts while questioning Judge Brett Kavanaugh during his Supreme Court confirmation hearing in the Dirksen Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill September 27, 2018 in Washington, DC. Graham has said he will not support an infrastructure deal reached on Thursday. Win McNamee/Getty Images