Biden Says He Is ‘Prepared To Compromise’ In Bipartisan Infrastructure Meeting

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Anders Hagstrom White House Correspondent
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President Joe Biden told a bipartisan group of legislators that he is “prepared to compromise” on his $2.25 trillion infrastructure plan at a White House meeting Monday.

Republicans present at the meeting include Utah Sen. Mitt Romney, North Dakota Sen. John Hoeven, Florida Rep. Carlos Giménez, and Texas Rep. Kay Granger. Independent Maine Rep. Angus King was also present along with five Democratic senators and representatives. Republicans have criticized Biden’s infrastructure plan for allegedly having little to do with roads and bridges, arguing that it is instead a disguise for unrelated Democratic party priorities. Biden and Democrats argue the definition of “infrastructure” ought to be expanded to include welfare, climate initiatives, and other programs. (RELATED: Here’s Biden’s Strategy To Build GOP Support For His Massive Spending Plan)

Monday’s meeting is supposed to be a kick-off for the Biden administration’s larger push to create bipartisan support for his plan. Republicans and more radical Democrats have both proposed alternative versions to Biden’s plan, but the White House has yet to announce any specific concessions to either side.

“He is very open to hearing different ideas, hearing different ways to get these — these big ideas he’s put forward; this historic investment to modernize our infrastructure, create millions of jobs forward,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki stated at a Friday press briefing. “The mechanisms for that, the construction of it, the pieces that it could flow through — he’s very open to what that looks like.”

The White House revealed part of its plan to gain support earlier in April, targeting Democrats’ chief Republican opponents, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, with public fact sheets detailing benefits that residents in Kentucky and California would receive under the plan.

“12% of Kentuckians live in areas where, by one definition, there is no broadband infrastructure that provides minimally acceptable speeds,” the White House wrote in a fact sheet released Monday. “The American Jobs Plan will invest $100 billion to bring universal, reliable, high-speed and affordable coverage to every family in America.” (RELATED: Psaki Says White House Targeting ‘White Conservative Communities’ With Vaccine PSAs On ‘The Deadliest Catch,’ NASCAR, and CMT)

“In California, there are 1,536 bridges and over 14,220 miles of highway in poor condition,” another fact sheet reads. “The American Jobs Plan will devote more than $600 billion to transform our nations’ transportation infrastructure.”

Republicans like Texas Sen. Ted Cruz say that only 5 percent of the spending in Biden’s plan goes to traditional infrastructure projects.