WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — The clock is ticking for Senate Democrats to pass President Joe Biden’s Build Back Better Package. They say they can pass it in the Senate by Christmas.
“We’re making good progress there,” said Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y.
On Tuesday, White House press secretary Jen Psaki insisted the president is inching closer to a deal that wins the support of moderate Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va.
“We’re right in the thick of it,” Psaki said. “He knows in order to make progress, ‘compromise’ can’t be treated as a dirty word.”
But Manchin is throwing cold water on Democrats’ Christmas deadline, voicing continued concern over some of the bill’s provisions and it’s nearly $2 trillion price tag.
Senate Republicans railed against the plan on Tuesday. They say treating the bill’s proposals as temporary hides the real cost.
“We should stop this reckless tax and spending proposal,” Sen. Mike Crapo, R-Idaho, on the Senate floor. “The true cost of the bill without gimmicks is above four and a half trillion and approaching five trillion.”
Crapo also rejects the nearly $80 billion in IRS funding included in the bill and says the agency will use the money to go after middle class tax payers.
“To field an army of IRS agents who are going to go out and initiate investigations, perform audits,” said Sen. Todd Young, R-Ind.
Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, said the IRS would be “snooping around in our bank accounts.”
Democrats deny anyone making less than $400,000 will be unfairly targeted, but Republicans say they’re not taking Democrats’ word for it.
“We can — and probably will — bring an amendment on the floor … to prohibit the utilization of these dollars to go after any tax payer who earns less than $400,000,” Crapo said.