Democrats of West Virginia said Wednesday that Infrastructure talks with President Biden collapsed because the two sides differed on what constitutes infrastructure.
Biden met with Capito on several occasions during the past few weeks to try and bridge the estimated $700 billion gap between Republicans and Democrats. On Tuesday, Biden called off the talks after the two sides were unable to reach an agreement.
In the end, we never got to the scope of what infrastructure is and that's Dana Perino told Fox News on America's Newsroom. The president still had physical items in his plan that we felt were not exactly extraneous infrastructure.
Last month, Capito and fellow Senate Republicans proposed a $928 billion infrastructure plan, up from their previous $568 billion offer. The proposal focused on the core infrastructure including roads and bridges, public transportation, ports and waterways, and broadband.
The proposal would have been made by repurposing unselected federal funds allocated to COVID 19 relief and would have left intact former President Donald Trump's tax cuts, which lowered the top corporate tax rate to 21%.
The Biden administration, however, has other ideas about what constitutes infrastructure.
Its proposed $1.7 trillion proposal, originally $2.25 trillion, would make money for the areas that're considered infrastructure, but also for things like upgrading schools' ventilation system and energy efficiency and caregiving for elderly and disabled Americans.
The breakdown of the bipartisan talks means that Democrats are likely to try and pass their own version of the bill through the budget reconciliation process in order to bypass a Republican filibuster which would require 60 votes to pass. The bill would pass by budget reconciliation with all 50 Democrats voting in favor and a tie-breaking vote from Vice President Kamala Harris.
In July, Democratic Majority Leader Biden, D-N.Y. is planning to forge ahead with Schumer's infrastructure plan.
I think the American people lose because they want to see us work together, Capito said. Not to mention how much people now have to do for infrastructure if we don't get a more productive effort here when we have the opportunity to do it.