INVEST IN AMERICA WEEKLY ROUNDUP
- Invest in America Action held a press call in response to Senate Republicans’ counter-proposal on infrastructure. Senators Wyden (D-OR) and Casey (D-PA) along with Mike Konczal from the Roosevelt Institute criticized the Republican plan, deeming it “too small,” a “scheme,” a “slap in the face” and “grossly inappropriate.” See more coverage below.
- Invest in America Action released state infrastructure report cards for Republican senators who are stonewalling robust infrastructure investments their states sorely need through the American Jobs Plan. The report cards assess the quality and safety of states’ roads and bridges, public transportation, drinking water, housing, broadband, care infrastructure, manufacturing, and more.
- Invest in America released a new research report highlighting how investments like the American Jobs Plan will create jobs and shore up the country against the threat of climate change.
- Invest in America uplifted an op-ed penned by Former U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx, who made the case that the investments in President Biden’s American Jobs Plan can help reverse the structural racism built into much of our infrastructure.
What to make of the new GOP infrastructure plan: A group of Senate Republicans rolled out a $568 billion infrastructure plan of their own on Thursday, with backing from leadership. It was more pamphlet than a proposal, consisting of two pages and was light on details.
While Republicans said they were open to negotiating with the White House on climate, they’ve so far drawn the line on including big-ticket items like the Biden plan’s $400 billion investment in long-term care for the elderly and disabled.
“That alone makes it unacceptable to me,” Sen. Bob Casey, D-Pa., told reporters on a call, saying the omission would leave out “women in the workforce who are often burdened by caregiving responsibilities for two different generations of their families.”
“The Republican response to their friends, the mega-corporations, is you won’t have to pay one single penny, one single penny,” Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., said on a call with reporters. “Who’s going to pay for it? Middle-class families.”
Business Insider: Democrats torch the 2-page GOP infrastructure blueprint as ‘a slap in the face’ and ‘a joke’
Democrats had scathing assessments for the two-page Republican infrastructure outline released on Thursday, a sign that a bipartisan deal was not immediately in sight on one of President Joe Biden’s top economic priorities.
“I think this Republican proposal is light years out of the ballpark in terms of being able to get a bipartisan compromise,” Sen. Ron Wyden, chair of the Senate Finance Committee, said on a press call. “They really dump it all on the backs of middle-class workers.”
Roll Call: Democrats unimpressed by GOP’s $568 billion infrastructure plan
Senate Republicans characterize their newly unveiled five-year, $568 billion counteroffer to President Joe Biden’s eight-year, $2 trillion infrastructure proposal as a starting point to serious negotiations. Democrats dismissed the proposal as not serious at all.
“The issue is, are Republicans going to be serious about getting over the bar of being serious,” Senate Finance Chair Ron Wyden, D-Ore., said after the plan was released Thursday. “Because this was not a real proposal.”
Politico: ‘Far too small’: Democrats pile on GOP infrastructure plan
The GOP proposal also relies on a set of mostly unrealistic pay-fors, and would impose user fees instead of the Democrats’ approach of raising corporate taxes.
“It fails to meet the moment we’re in,” said Sen. Bob Casey (D-Pa.), who like some other Democratic senators said it was “not a proposal I could support.”
Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) called the proposal “far too small” and said it “paves over the status quo.”
“The contrast could not be more stark,” Wyden said.
The Hill: Democratic senator says GOP infrastructure proposal is ‘a slap in the face’
Sen. Bob Casey (D-Pa.) on Thursday dismissed a $568 billion infrastructure proposal unveiled by his GOP colleagues earlier in the day as a “slap in the face,” setting the tone for what is expected to be a tough negotiation.
Casey declared he wouldn’t be “a part of any scheme that sells out our seniors,” referring to the lack of funding for home care services in the GOP infrastructure plan.
Washington Post: Senate Republicans unveil $568 billion counteroffer on infrastructure upgrades
Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) blasted the package Thursday on a call with reporters as “far too small to fund the investments the American people need and strongly support,” fretting about the absence of aid to address climate change. And Sen. Robert P. Casey Jr. (D-Pa.), joining Wyden, described it as a “scheme” masquerading as a response “to the moment that we’re in.”
“I will fight it with everything I can,” Casey said, pointing to the loss of elder-care provisions he supports in Biden’s plan.
American Independent: GOP’s counter to Biden jobs plan cuts help for seniors and caregivers
Sen. Bob Casey (D-PA), chair of the Senate Special Committee on Aging, denounced the GOP plan on Thursday, vowing not to be “a part of any scheme that sells out our seniors and those with disabilities who have suffered disproportionately during the pandemic.”
“The decision by Senate Republicans to completely cut the funding for home and community-based services that is in the American Jobs Plan is a slap in the face to older adults and people with disabilities. It’s also an insult to the workers who provide home and community-based services,” he said in a statement.
Other business leaders support the plan, both the corporate rate increase and the new expanded spending. Last week, the advocacy group Invest in America featured women business leaders who emphasized the positive economic effect child and dependent care would have for working women and women-owned small businesses.
President Biden is proposing a historic expansion of what is necessary infrastructure for a modern, fair, and prosperous economy. We are in for a big fight over this. But Americans always have to fight for these expansions. Policies and programs that we now take for granted—universal public education, Social Security, race and gender fairness in employment and business, Medicare—always have been fiercely opposed by people who said those weren’t the government’s business.
Transportation Today: Report: American People show bipartisan support for improving nation’s infrastructure
A new report from Invest in America and Data for Progress has found that Americans overwhelmingly support President Joe Biden’s American Jobs Plan.
A recent survey of likely voters found that 73 percent of Americans support the president’s infrastructure plan released in March. And, the report found that support is largely bipartisan.