Biden Participates In Closed-Door Meeting Amid Infrastructure Debates

Joe Biden + Nancy Pelosi

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In the words of renowned comedian Kevin Hart, it's about go down! In a closed-door meeting on Thursday morning, President Joe Biden spoke to a number of House Democrats about the framework of his $1.75 trillion economic and climate agenda. In recent weeks, Biden's economic and climate agenda has faced push back from several progressives, right-leaning Democrats and Republicans. However, White House officials feel that the most recent edition of his proposal "will earn the support of all 50 Democratic senators and pass the House."

According to reports from multiple outlets, the latest proposal from the President will provide universal and free preschool for toddlers. The President is also looking to provide an extension of the child tax credit that would benefit more than 30 million households. However, paid family leave does not appear to be a part of the package.

"Paid leave is just the latest axe that might fall—not because of popular opposition—but because it goes against the interests of corporations and the Members of Congress who do their bidding," Rep. Ilhan Omar tweeted on Wednesday night.

As for health care, the White House is seeking to provide lower premiums for nearly 10 million Americans who have insurance though the Affordable Care Act. Adding on, Biden hopes to expand Medicare coverage for hearing services.

On the topic of immigration, CNN reports that the White House is looking to make a $100 billion investment in immigration services. A White House officials tells the news network that the investment would “reduce backlogs, expand legal representation, and make the asylum system and border processing more efficient.”

Rounding out the proposal, the framework of Biden's economic and climate package is expected to include clean energy tax credits for Americans. One official tells CNN that it would be the "largest-ever single investment in our clean energy economy."

Over time, Biden and his team have cut a number of pieces from their proposal. Most notably, paid family leave, free college options and about $50 billion in funding for HBCUs have disappeared from the framework.

Nevertheless, the framework of the Biden's economic and climate proposal appears to have the support of several veteran House Democrats. However, younger, more progressive Democrats are not entirely sold on the framework of a deal. Rather, progressives want something a bit more certain before voting on it.

“We need to have a certainty, either through legislative text (or) agreements, that we can trust. We need something a little bit more than just something on the back of an envelope.” Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez told New York Daily News on Thursday.

"We want to see the actual text because we don't want any confusion, misunderstandings. My understanding is that the framework is very general. So let's turn it into legislative text," Rep. Pramila Jayapal added in a separate statement.

Despite concerns raised by Democratic House members, Rep. Mike Quigley tells CNN that Biden and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi are hoping to hold a vote on the framework later today.

President Biden is expected to address the matter later this morning. Shortly afterward, he plans to travel to Europe for the G-20 Summit and a meeting with the Pope.

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