Senate Democratic leaders say they have reached an agreement on the party’s main climate and economic bill with Kyrsten Sinema – the centrist Democrat whose opposition has remained a major obstacle to the passage of the most ambitious American climate legislation. nowadays.
Support from Sinema, a former Green Party member who has become one of the most conservative Democrats in Congress, was crucial to the passage of the bill, which addresses energy, environmental, health and tax measures. His success is seen as the Democratic Party’s most substantial chance to advance domestic policy ahead of the midterm elections.
The support of all 50 Democratic senators will be needed to pass any legislation in the equally divided Senate, given the party’s slim majority and Republican resistance to action on the climate crisis.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said lawmakers reached a compromise “which I believe will have the support” of all Democrats in the House. His party needs unanimity to pass the measure in the Senate 50-50, as well as the decisive vote of Vice President Kamala Harris.
Sinema, the Arizona senator considered the pivotal vote, said in a statement that she had accepted last-minute changes to the measure’s tax and energy provisions and was ready to “move on.” front” on the bill.
She said Democrats agreed to scrap a provision increasing taxes on “carried interest,” or profits that accrue to private equity firm executives. It’s a proposal she has long opposed, despite being the frontrunner of other Democrats, including conservative Democratic West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin, the architect of the overarching bill.
The deferred interest provision is estimated to generate $13 billion for the government over the next decade, a small portion of the measure’s $739 billion in total revenue.
Securing Sinema’s support was the next challenge for Democrats after Manchin, the centrist Democrat famous for thwarting his own party’s climate goals, surprised Washington last week by backing the plan.
Manchin, who has made millions from his ownership of a coal-trading firm, flip-flopped last week and announced support for $369 billion in spending to support renewable energy and reduce emissions. emissions.
Schumer said he hoped the Senate could begin voting on the bill – known as the Cut Inflation Act – on Saturday. The passage through the House, which the Democrats narrowly control, could take place next week.
Congressional final approval of the election-year measure would be a landmark achievement for Joe Biden and his party, marking one they could brag about to voters as November approaches.
Olivier Milthe man contributed to the reports