House Democrats late Friday night clinched a long-sought victory on President Biden’s domestic agenda, passing a $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill — while advancing an even larger social spending package — after months of stubborn infighting that’s bedeviled the party and helped deflate Biden’s public standing.
The back-to-back votes came after progressives caved on a key demand they’d maintained for months: their insistence that the climate and social spending package be passed on the same day as the more popular infrastructure proposal.
On Friday they shed that stipulation, threw their weight behind the public works bill — which had already passed the Senate — and helped send it along to Biden’s desk. They ultimately agreed to a procedural vote on the social spending bill, short of full passage.The tally on the infrastructure bill was 228-206, with 13 Republicans crossing the aisle to support the measure, and six progressive Democrats bucking Biden and party leaders to register their opposition to a process that left the fate of the larger bill up in the air.
The House then adopted a procedural rule establishing floor debate parameters for the $1.75 trillion social spending package along party lines, 221-213.
Biden praised the House action on both measures, calling passage of the bipartisan infrastructure bill “a monumental step forward” and emphasized that he looked forward to “signing both of these bills into law.”