On Saturday, President Joe Biden issued a statement seeking to walk back his perceived ultimatum that his support for the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure deal was dependent on his American Families Plan also reaching his desk through reconciliation.
“I indicated that I would refuse to sign the infrastructure bill if it was sent to me without my Families Plan and other priorities, including clean energy. That statement understandably upset some Republicans, who do not see the two plans as linked,” Biden said in a lengthy statement. “My comments also created the impression that I was issuing a veto threat on the very plan I had just agreed to, which was certainly not my intent,” he added.
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“So to be clear: our bipartisan agreement does not preclude Republicans from attempting to defeat my Families Plan; likewise, they should have no objections to my devoted efforts to pass that Families Plan and other proposals in tandem. We will let the American people — and the Congress — decide.”
Biden stirred up Democratic concerns and Republican ire with that suggestion he would withhold his signature on the bipartisan deal in order to ensure his sweeping human infrastructure plan was passed. “If this is the only one that comes to me, I’m not signing it. It’s in tandem,” Biden told reporters Thursday, referring to the newly negotiated deal.