Biden Reportedly Supported Progressives in Reconciliation Talks, Raising Eyebrows Among Moderates
Joe Biden, according to many observers, tends to go with a so-called "go-along-to-get-along" style and gives the impression that he is everyone's ally in his party, but it appears that now, in order to push his Build Back Better agenda through Congress, he might need to pick a side – which he has done, according to The New York Times.
The US president sided with progressive Democrats when he arrived at Capitol Hill on Friday during reconciliation package talks, the NYT reported, citing sources.
Joe Biden's support of the progressive faction did not sit well with moderates, who shared their frustration with the outlet.
“The way he is governing doesn’t reflect the skills I know he must have from his years as a legislator", said Representative Stephanie Murphy of Florida, a moderate. "I’m not clear why he came up to the Hill".
She called Biden's siding with the left “disappointing and frustrating", given that it is his own infrastructure legislation that is at stake
The way Biden, who has generally portrayed himself as someone who can unify both the United States and his own party, has "effectively" supported the left has prompted some people to suggest that this decision may affect the Democrats in the midterms.
“I don’t think it’s good for the Joe Biden administration, and I don’t think it’s good for Democrats”, said Texas Representative Henry Cuellar. Another representative, Missouri Democrat Emanuel Cleaver, commented on Biden's approach: "You got the feeling that Uncle Joe is for everybody, he likes everybody".
The failure to vote on Biden's infrastructure bill caused frustration among moderate Dems. Representative Josh Gottheimer in a statement on Friday slammed the "far-left faction", accusing the progressives of attempting "to put the president’s entire agenda, including this historic bipartisan infrastructure package [...] at risk".
At the same time, progressive Democrat Ilhan Omar argued that by passing the infrastructure bill alone, the party is "not even accomplishing 10 percent of his [Biden's] agenda".
As Democratic lawmakers remain divided over how to push the Build Back Better agenda forward and who exactly is undermining it, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has yet again put off the deadline
for the bill to be voted on, picking Halloween - 31 October - for the occasion.