After President Joe Biden announced his $2 trillion dollar infrastructure plan, lawmakers and lobbyists began to fight for a piece of it.
Biden’s infrastructure bill was the largest infrastructure package to be rolled out in over 50 years, Politico reported. Lobbyists fought and continue to fight to have a say in how the hefty spending package will be doled out. The scope of the plan was so broad that most lobbying industries were vying for a piece of how it, according to Politico — and the package could cause one of the most concerted and frenzied efforts among lobbyists in history. (RELATED: The White House Wedges Pro-Union Provisions Into Infrastructure Plan)
Sixteen organizations focused on labor and environmental issues came together to ask the Biden administration for $2 trillion in infrastructure investments.
A group of 60 Democrats from both chambers reportedly asked for $100 billion in funding for public housing. Democrats in Congress also urged Biden to include funds to fight climate change and support the objectives of the Green New Deal. Some climate experts, however, claim the package contains wasteful spending on green energy proposals.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told congressional Democrats that she hoped the plan would pass by the Fourth of July, Politico reported.
On the flip side, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said he would not support the plan if it included tax hikes and deficit expenses, according to Politico. Other congressmen, such as Republican Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan, criticized the plan for having an insufficient amount of actual infrastructure-related expenditures.
Only 9% of President Biden’s #COVID19 “relief” bill went to defeating COVID-19.
His infrastructure bill is worse.
Only 6% of it goes to bridges, highways, and roads!
— Rep. Jim Jordan (@Jim_Jordan) April 3, 2021
Major businesses such as Amazon, JP Morgan Chase, American Airlines and IBM have denounced the plan, claiming that the corporate tax hike would impede growth in the job market. Former Democratic Arkansas Sen. Blanche Lincoln, who is now a lobbyist, condemned the plan’s tax hikes. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce took a similar stance and criticized the corporate tax increases, Politico reported.
Fox News host and Daily Caller c0-founder Tucker Carlson also spoke out against the bill early in April.
“I mean look, if you want a reparations bill, if you want a Green New Deal, just say so and let’s have the debate, but don’t call it an infrastructure bill because it’s not,” Carlson said.
The White House said it welcomed input and suggestions for the plan.
“We’re welcoming ideas,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki said, according to Politico. “Republicans have ideas, other Democrats have ideas on different ways to pay for this package, on different ways to achieve the goals, we’re very open to that.”
Statements of bipartisanship of the Biden administration have been repeatedly and widely panned following the use of budget reconciliation to pass the COVID-19 relief bill, among other moves.