Other GOP Senators join Democrats to cross the 60 vote hurdle.
Seventeen U.S. Senate Republicans joined all 50 Democrats to advance President Joe Biden’s $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill on Wednesday. Those 17 are listed below:
- Sen. Roy Blunt (R-MO)
- Sen. Richard Burr (R-NC)
- Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV)
- Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-LA)
- Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME)
- Sen. Kevin Cramer (R-ND)
- Sen. Mike Crapo (R-ID)
- Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC)
- Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA)
- Sen. John Hoeven (R-ND)
- Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY)
- Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK)
- Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH)
- Sen. James Risch (R-ID)
- Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT)
- Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC)
- Sen. Todd Young (R-IN)
Sixty votes were needed to move the process forward.
Not among those were Mississippi’s two Republicans – Senator Roger Wicker and Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith.
Wicker, the ranking member of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, released the following statement on the motion to invoke cloture on the motion to proceed to consider bipartisan infrastructure legislation.
“I have long been a strong supporter of investing in our core infrastructure, but I am unable to support this agreement in its current form,” Wicker said. “Yet again, Senators are being asked to move forward on a bill that we have not had an opportunity to read.”
At one point earlier this year, Wicker was among Senate Republicans attempting to negotiate with Democrats and the White House on a proposal. This has since changed as the proposed spending package has grown beyond the scope Wicker was focused on.
Senator Hyde-Smith has said she does not want to vote on moving the infrastructure discussion forward until there is an opportunity to actually read and debate a bill.
“I voted no on yesterday’s infrastructure package because we still don’t know what’s in this $1.2 TRILLION bill,” Senator Hyde-Smith said Thursday morning on Facebook. “We need to fix our roads and bridges and invest in broadband access, but it’s still unclear how this bill will accomplish that and what other things will be included in the fine print.”
The White House, in a Biden tweet, said they had reached “a historic deal on infrastructure.”
“The Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal is the largest infrastructure bill in a century. It will grow the economy, create good-paying jobs, and set America on a path to win the future,” the tweet read.
We’ve reached a historic deal on infrastructure, folks. The Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal is the largest infrastructure bill in a century. It will grow the economy, create good-paying jobs, and set America on a path to win the future.
— President Biden (@POTUS) July 28, 2021
According to a White House release, the proposal includes:
- $40 billion for bridge repair, replacement and rehabilitation
- $66 billion investment in Amtrak passenger rail
- $39 billion for modernizing public transit and improving access for the elderly and people with disabilities
- $55 billion for clean water investments
- $65 billion in broadband internet deployment
- $7.5 billion to build electric vehicle chargers nationwide
The White House says the proposal will be funded by using unspent emergency relief funds, corporate user fees, and ramped up tax enforcement for crypto currencies, among “other bipartisan measures.” Another nearly $53 billion could be used from states that returned unused enhanced federal pandemic unemployment money, Mississippi being among that lot.