Remember when President Joe Biden stunned the political world by threatening to veto a bipartisan $1.1 trillion traditional infrastructure spending bill that he, Joe Biden, had just encouraged the Senate to pass? It was a bizarre moment, but Biden was accommodating House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who planned to use the bipartisan bill as a hostage to force the passage of the much larger, partisan, $3.5 trillion social and climate spending proposal that Democrats wanted. If you want the traditional infrastructure spending, Pelosi told House members, you’ll have to vote for the $3.5 trillion in left-wing Democratic priorities, too.
Now Pelosi has caved. She has decided to allow the House to vote on the bipartisan infrastructure bill this week. The reason is the $3.5 trillion bill has just not come together in the Senate. No one seems to know what Democratic Sens. Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema will vote for, and without all 50 Democratic senators on board, the bill will go nowhere. At the very least, it will take a while to do.