House Democrats pass budget

By ethan Nichols, Guest Writer

House Democrats narrowly passed a budget resolution on Aug. 24 outlining their $3.5 trillion spending bill. 

The vote came after nine moderate and centrist Democrats threatened to oppose the spending plan. The 220-212 vote was decided along party lines, with all nine House Democrats ultimately voting in favor of the bill. 

After pressure from House and party leadership, the group of nine voted for the resolution. 

The group faced immense pressure from Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, congressional progressives and others. 

The nine representatives agreed that by voting for the budget resolution, the House would vote on the bipartisan infrastructure bill no later than Sept. 27. 

The Democrats who initially came out against the spending plan included Rep. Josh Gottheimer, D-N.J., Rep. Carolyn Bourdeaux, D-Ga., Rep. Jared Golden, D-Maine, Rep. Ed Case, D-Hawaii, Jim Costa, D-Cali., Kurt Schrader, D-Ore., Rep. Filemon Vela, D-Texas, Rep. Henry Cuellar, D-Texas, and Rep. Vicente Gonzalez, D-Texas.

Gottheimer explained the strategy of his agreement regarding last Tuesday’s vote in a press release.

“This agreement does what we set out to do: secure a standalone vote for the bipartisan infrastructure bill, send it to the president’s desk and then separately consider the reconciliation package,” Gottheimer said.

“With this week’s votes, we will also immediately begin the budget resolution process,” he continued. 

Pelosi also supported the budget measure, urging Democrats to remain united.

“Our people who put a Democrat in the White House and Democratic Congress are watching to see how we meet their needs,” she said. 

“We have an opportunity to pass something so substantial for our country, so transformative, we haven’t seen anything like it. We cannot squander this majority,” she added.

Many Republicans have supported the bipartisan infrastructure bill but opposed the spending resolution. Republicans opposed the budget resolution’s spending and tax increases for businesses and the wealthy.

“It’ll be over my dead body, because I’m going to do everything in our power to stop it,” House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy said on CNBC’s Squawk Box when asked if the budget bill will pass.

McCarthy went on to criticize the representatives who formerly opposed the bill but eventually voted in favor of it.

Interviewers also asked McCarthy whether he would be able to stop the House’s $1 trillion infrastructure bill from passing in retaliation to the Democrats’ budget bill. McCarthy opposes the bipartisan infrastructure bill.

“I don’t know yet, until the vote takes place,” McCarthy said. 

In the upper chamber, Senator Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., is spending the coming weeks soliciting support in the Midwest for the Democrats’ $3.5 trillion spending bill. 

“I want people to understand what (the bill) means to ordinary Americans,” Sanders said.

“This is the people’s budget. As chairman, if I had the time, I’d go to 50 states in this country. But we’re starting off with three in the Midwest,” he said.