Spending Bill Live Updates: Biden Heads to Rome As Infrastructure, Spending Bills Hang in the Balance

Live Updates

President Joe Biden met with House Democrats Thursday morning to ensure their votes for his Build Back Better plan.

"I don't think it's hyperbole to say that the House and Senate majorities and my presidency will be determined by what happens in the next week," the president said during the meeting.

Afterward, Biden said he was confident he had enough support to pass the bill.

During his remarks on the plan, Biden called the framework a "historic" investment in America and its people.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi called the bill "remarkable" and likened it to the New Deal. However, she said she will still fight for paid family leave, something Biden omitted from his framework.

While progressives voiced their support for the plan, they wanted to read the text of the legislation and get assurance of the Senate's support. Representative Pramila Jayapal said progressives are adamant about passing both the Build Back Better plan and the Infrastructure bill together.

The live updates for this blog have ended.

Biden heads to Rome as Congress reviews spending, infrastructure bills

As members of Congress meet to review the Build Back Better plan, President Biden is off to Rome to meet with Pope Francis and Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi ahead of the G20 Summit.

Next stop: Rome. pic.twitter.com/hl7WML3Zqw

— President Biden (@POTUS) October 28, 2021

Sen. Feinstein says Build Back Better is 'an investment in future generations'

Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) calls the Build Back Better plan "an investment in future generations."

"This bill invests in the American people, the workers and families who have suffered through a pandemic and an economic downturn and need help to keep going," she said in a statement.

Read my statement on President Biden’s Build Back Better framework:https://t.co/CUsI7jpOAA

— Senator Dianne Feinstein (@SenFeinstein) October 28, 2021

"In my opinion, investing in the expansion of education opportunities, caring for our children and the elderly, making health care affordable and combating climate change will have longer-term benefits that any road or bridge," she said. "It's an investment in future generations."

Build Back Better plan will expand universal education by two years, Biden says

President Biden shares statistics on how his Build Back Better plan will help families.

A typical family spends at least $11,000 a year on child care, according to Biden.

Under this new plan, families making less than $300,000 a year will not pay more than seven percent of their income on child care.

The plan will also ensure every three and four-year-olds can go to preschool. This will expand the length of universal education in the U.S. from 12 to 14 years.

Today — with my Democratic colleagues — we have a framework for my Build Back Better plan.

Here’s how it will fundamentally change the lives of millions of people for the better:

— President Biden (@POTUS) October 28, 2021

Rep. Jayapal says there are not enough votes to pass infrastructure bill

Representative Pramila Jayapal said there a "too many no votes" for the infrastructure bill to pass today, according to NBC reporter Kyle Stewart.

"There are still a lot of people who just really believe that we cannot pass the [infrastructure bill] without the full agreement, legislative language, and a vote, together," she told MSNBC.

She said progressives want both votes for the Build Back Better plan and the infrastructure bill "moving forward together" and commitment from the Senate that they are also supportive of the framework and "it will be passed with no undermining in the senate."

Following a Progressive Caucus meeting, Jayapal said they are "committed to staying here" to work on the Build Better Back plan.

Speaker Pelosi calls Build Back Better bill 'remarkable'

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi said the Build Back Better plan is "remarkable" and highlighted its emphasis on childcare, climate, healthcare and job creation.

"It's remarkable. It's a bigger vision than we've seen in a long time," she said, likening the plan to President Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal.

"If you took any one piece of it, it would be transformative and historic," she said, noting the expansion of the Affordable Care Act and the bold steps to combat climate change.

"Taken together, it's quite a spectacular vision that President Biden has put forth."

However, Pelosi said she will still fight for paid family leave.

"I'm still fighting for paid leave," she said. "I frankly have a hard time debating it because I don't understand why we wouldn't have that."

She provided an update on the vote for the Build Back Better plan, announcing the rules committee is preparing to meet. Members have the text of the bill up for review and consideration, Pelosi said.

There will be a hearing from the chairman of the committee on "the greatness of the Build Back Better plan" but Pelosi would not say if there will be a vote on the infrastructure bill today.

Progressives approve Build Back Better plan

Representative Pramila Jayapal said the House Progressive Caucus "enthusiastically endorsed" a resolution that approves Biden's Build Better Back framework.

She said many of the progressives' priorities were included in the framework, but they are "not giving up the fight for anything we wanted."

"It is not everything that we would do if we had much bigger majorities," she said.

"It is not everything that we would do if we had much bigger majorities."

— Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-WA) on Build Back Better legislation pic.twitter.com/MUf3zqbB0R

— The Recount (@therecount) October 28, 2021

Jayapal said she trusts President Biden when he told them he believes he has the commitment to get this done in the Senate.

"We are going to believe the President of the United States," she said.

Biden says Build Back Better plan is about believing in 'the capacity of the American people'

President Biden said "it's always a good bet to bet on the American people."

He said his Build Back Better plan is about giving Americans "half a chance" and "believing in America and in the capacity of the American people."

"Given half a chance, the American people have never let the country down," he said.

Biden wants wealthiest Americans to pay their fair share in taxes

President Biden said the Build Back Better plan is "fully paid for" through raising taxes on large corporations and ensuring the wealthiest Americans pay their fair share in taxes.

"I don't want to punish anyone's success. I'm a capitalist," Biden said. "All I'm asking is that you pay your fair share."

Biden said the plan will raise a 15 percent minimum tax on the profits top companies report to shareholders.

The plan will also ensure the wealthy do not cheat on their taxes by hiding their income from the IRS.

Biden said $160 billion in taxes are evaded by the top 1 percent of wealthy Americans per year.

Americans earning less than $400,000 a year will not pay more in federal taxes, Biden said.

Biden says Build Back Better plan is a 'fundamental game-changer'

During his remarks Thursday, President Biden said his Build Back Better plan is a "fundamental game-changer for families and our economy."

The bill will expand services to seniors to help "the sandwich generation" who feel "financially squeezed by raising a child and caring for an aging parent."

Biden said this will help seniors "live in their own homes with the dignity they deserve."

The plan will expand the child tax credit to eliminate child poverty and invest in child care in order to get women back into the workforce

"We're going make sure families making less than $300,000 will spend no less than seven percent of their income on childcare," Biden said.

The plan will also invest in education, expand coverage under the Affordable Care Act and create union jobs to build up infrastructure to make the country safer and more affordable.

Biden added that the Build Back Better plan's investment in the climate is "bigger than any other bill" in American history.

He said the plan will invest in clean transportation, clean energy and reduce harmful emissions by 50 to 52 percent by the year 2030.

It will also increase the country's resilience against growing extreme weather events that he said cost the U.S. $99 billion in damage last year.

Biden says U.S. risks 'losing our edge' if we don't invest in the county

Biden says this plan is about "competitiveness versus complacency."

"Somewhere along the way, we stopped investing in ourselves," Biden said. "We risk losing our edge as a nation."

He said that our competitors are investing and "we are standing still."

He added that the plan will allow the country to expand opportunities and lead the world.

Biden says he has 'a historic economic framework'

In his remarks to the nation, President Joe Biden said he knows "we have a historic economic framework."

"After months of tough and thoughtful negotiations, I think we have a historic—I know we have a historic economic framework," he said.

He said his framework will "invest in the nation and its people," "turn to climate crisis into an opportunity" and "win the economic competition of the 21st century" against China and other world powers.

He added that the plan is "fiscally responsible and fully paid for" and will reduce the national deficit.

"No one got everything they wanted, including me," Biden said. "That's what compromise is."

Senator Manchin would not say if he supports the Build Back Better framework

Senator Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) said "significant progress" has been made on Biden's reconciliation package.

"After months of productive, good-faith negotiations with President Biden and the White House, we have made significant progress on the proposed budget reconciliation package," she said in a statement. "I look forward to getting this done, expanding economic opportunities and helping everyday families get ahead."

Meanwhile, Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) wouldn't say if he supports the Build Back Better framework.

"This is all in the hands of the house right now," he told reporters. "I worked in good faith, and I look forward to continuing working in good faith and that is all I have to say today."

WATCH: Biden to speak on his Build Back Better Plan

President Joe Biden will deliver remarks shortly, following the release of his Build Back Better framework.

I ran for president saying it was time to rebuild the backbone of this nation – the middle class.

That’s exactly what my Build Back Better Framework is going to do. pic.twitter.com/MQzwb2w5a1

— President Biden (@POTUS) October 28, 2021

The president's remarks will be streamed live on the White House YouTube channel at 11:30 ET.

Biden tells Democrats 'we badly need a vote' on his bills

After meeting with House Democrats, President Biden was confident in the support for his bills.

"I think we're going to be in good shape," he said leaving the meeting.

Biden asked members of Congress to help him with their votes.

"We badly need a vote on both of these measures," Biden said, per a source familiar with the meeting. "I don't think it's hyperbole to say that the House and Senate majorities and my presidency will be determined by what happens in the next week."

"I need you to help me. I need your votes," he added.

According to several outlets, lawmakers in the room began shouting, "Vote! Vote! Vote!"

Rep. Omar says Build Back Better is an opportunity to guarantee paid family leave

Progressive Caucus member Ilhan Omar wants to include paid family leave in Biden's Build Back Better plan.

Representative Omar said it is "an outrage" that the United States is the only industrialized country without a guaranteed family and medical leave.

"Build Back Better is our opportunity to change it," she said in a tweet.

There is no mention of paid family leave in the framework of the plan released by the White House Thursday.

The United States is the only industrialized country in the world not to guarantee family and medical leave.

It’s an outrage.

Build Back Better is our opportunity to change it.

— Rep. Ilhan Omar (@Ilhan) October 28, 2021

Progressives want to read the text of Biden's plan

Members of the Progressive Caucus are demanding more from Biden's Build Back Better framework.

Representative Pramila Jayapal told reporters that she and other progressives need to see the text of the Build Back Better plan before the House holds a vote on that and the infrastructure bill.

A framework "will show tremendous momentum," she said. "But we want to see the actual text because we don't want any confusion or misunderstandings. My understanding is that the framework is very general."

Representative Cori Bush echoed that sentiment. She said the framework alone is not enough.

"I need to see text, but I want a Senate vote," she told reporters. "Right now that's still where I stand."

Biden is 'confident' his Build Back Better plan will pass through Congress

President Biden is confident that he has the necessary support in Congress to pass his spending bill.

"It's a good day," Biden said Thursday morning. "Everybody's on board."

After "good faith" negotiations with Congressional leadership and members of Congress, including Senators Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema, "President Biden is confident this is a framework that can pass both houses of Congress, and he looks forward to signing it into law," according to the framework of his Build Back Better plan.

After months of tough and thoughtful negotiations, we have a framework that I believe can pass.

I’ll be speaking more about it at 11:30, but you can read the details here: https://t.co/a2hRqdZ6wa.

— President Biden (@POTUS) October 28, 2021

White House reveals framework for Biden spending bill

The White House announced the framework for President Joe Biden's $1.85 trillion spending bill.

The key provisions include:

  • $555 billion to fight climate change, including investments in clean energy
  • $400 billion for universal Pre-K for three and four-year-olds
  • $200 billion to extend the child tax credit
  • $165 billion to reduce health care premiums for people under the Affordable Care Act and extend coverage for hearing
  • $150 billion to build more than one million affordable housing units
  • $100 billion to "reform our broken immigration system"
  • $40 billion for worker training and high education

The plan also includes a 15 percent tax on large corporations, an additional five percent tax on incomes exceeding $10 million a year and another three percent tax on incomes above $25 million.

Graphic shows liberal rise and conservative fall among Democrats

A new graph by Statista shows a dramatic shift in political ideology in the Democratic Party in the past 20 years, from a largely moderate base to a more liberal standing.

Over half of self-identifying Democrat voters describe themselves as 'liberal' and only 12 percent say they are conservative - significantly down on 2001.

Graph shows liberal transformation of Democratic Party
A new graph shows the dramatic shift towards liberal sentiment in the Democratic Party in the past 20 years Newsweek/Statista

Elon Musk hits out at proposed 'billionaires tax'

The Tesla and SpaceX founder - who currently has a wealth of over $250 billion - says him paying the tax would only be 10 percent of Biden's spending bill.

According to their own estimates, this tax only covers ~10% of the $3.5 trillion spending bill.

Where will the other 90% come from?

The answer is you.

— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) October 27, 2021

Sanders to join progressives in blocking infrastructure bill until social policies pass - reports

The Vermont senator has reportedly told House progressives that he will support their opposition to pushing ahead with the infrastructure bill until Biden sets up the right conditions.

He wants the wider social spending package to pass through Congress at the same time as infrastructure measures, reports CNN correspondent Manu Raju.

New - In a key sign of the challenges facing Biden, Sen. Bernie Sanders told House progressives he backs their position against moving ahead with the infrastructure bill until the larger economic package moves through the House at the same time, per two sources

— Manu Raju (@mkraju) October 28, 2021

Kyrsten Sinema reluctantly backs progressive tax

The moderate senator - the centre of a major storm about President Biden's social spending plans - has given her backing to a minimum tax on large corporations.

Statement on Proposed Corporate Minimum Tax pic.twitter.com/tRLMDXLgot

— Kyrsten Sinema (@SenatorSinema) October 26, 2021

House Democratic Caucus confirms Biden crunch meeting

The group has officially announced this morning that the president will join a crunch meeting on Capitol Hill later this morning to convince progressives to pass his infrastructure bills.

Follow Newsweek's liveblog for updates from the meeting...

'It's time we end that international embarrassment': Bernie Sanders hints paid leave is 'red line'

Comparing the U.S. to other countries, the Vermont senator said it was "extremely disappointing" that paid parental and medical leave is being dropped from President Biden's spending bill.

He added to speculation of a "red line" being passed that would result in the loss of at least 12 votes in favor of the plans, meaning it would not pass through Congress.

FULL STORY: Paid Family Leave Fight Delays Reconciliation Bill as Progressives Warn of 'Red Line'

Less than half of Americans approve of Biden's handling of spending bill - poll

New figures from the Associated Press and NORC Center for Public Affairs Research show that 36 percent of Americans say they approve of the President's negotiation handling so far.

But 41 percent expressed their disapproval and 23 were on the fence.

President Biden to meet Democrats ahead of Europe trip.

The president will reportedly use the meeting to plead with progressives not to sink his infrastructure bill, which the group is using as leverage over his social spending plans.

Several major players in negotiations, including Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, have indicated they will either miss the vote or vote against the infrastructure plans if too much was cut - with paid leave a red line crossed for some.

Biden's last-ditch plea will come just hours before he leaves for Europe ahead of the G20 and Cop26 summits.

Progressives accuse Democrat colleagues of 'bowing down to big pharma and corporate polluters'

Representatives Ilhan Omar and Rashida Talib have been outspoken in recent days amid tense talks over the spending bill - but the latest axing of paid leave from the plans has prompted fury from the pair.

We did not come to Congress to watch our entire agenda get torpedoed by corporate lobbyists, billionaires, and coal company owners hellbent on screwing over the American people.

It’s time to bring to the floor a bill that prioritizes people over corporations.

— Ilhan Omar (@IlhanMN) October 28, 2021

I am not going to sell out my district for a bill that was written by the fossil fuel industry and championed by two Dem senators who bow down to Big Pharma & corporate polluters.

— Rashida Tlaib (@RashidaTlaib) October 28, 2021

Good morning and welcome to Newsweek's liveblog

Today will see another round of heated negotiations between Democrats and President Biden pleading with progressives to pass his infrastructure bill, as scrapping between the party factions becomes bitter.

Follow Newsweek's liveblog throughout Thursday for all the latest...