The News-Times

Time no ally as Dems try to finish Biden’s $2T bill


If President Joe Biden’s $2 trillion social and environmen­t package was a Broadway show, its seven months on Congress’ stage could qualify it as a hit. But lawmaking isn’t show business, and many Democrats worry that with the curtain falling soon on 2021, time is not their friend.

Each day threatens to push final action into 2022, an election year when control of Congress will be at stake and lawmakers will become more wary of casting tough votes.

Democratic Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer wants to end his party’s disagreeme­nts and finally squeeze the bill through his chamber before Christmas. Indeed, holiday deadlines are a time-tested way of prodding lawmakers to solve disputes so they can go home. And momentum toward approving Biden’s top domestic initiative — the House passed an initial version last month — seems to make prospects strong.

Yet while Schumer and other Democrats express confidence that his target date will be met, some are anxious it won’t and are concerned about damaging consequenc­es.

The New York senator needs time to work out final compromise­s with party moderates including West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin.

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