Senators come to a deal on infrastructure

Ten senators from both sides of the aisle announced an agreement on a “compromise framework” for an infrastructure plan with a $1.2 trillion price tag to be used over the next eight years, according to The Hill.

 According to the outlet, this deal would pay out $974 billion to be used over five years in a move that is reportedly focused on “core, physical infrastructure.” They were clear, however, that it would not increase taxes. 

The agreement does, however, include an option to tie the gas tax to inflation and it provides around $579 billion in new funding for new legislation. 

“Our group — comprised of 10 senators, five from each party — has worked in good faith and reached a bipartisan agreement on a realistic, compromise framework to modernize our nation’s infrastructure and energy technologies,” members of the bipartisan group said in a joint statement.

“This investment would be fully paid for and not include tax increases,” they added.

The senators involved in the bipartisan effort were Sens. Rob Portman (R-OH) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), Sens. Bill Cassidy (R-LA), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NJ), Susan Collins (R-ME), Joe Manchin (D-WV), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), John Tester (D-MT), Mitt Romney (R-UT) and Mark Warner (D-VA).

While there are still several hurdles that the bill has to get past, the senators who signed their names to the effort are “optimistic this can lay the groundwork to garner broad support from both parties and meet America’s infrastructure needs.”

One of those hurdles is to get a stamp of approval from the executive branch, which seems somewhat unlikely, considering the $1.2 trillion is just a fraction of the $4.1 trillion President Joe Biden has asked for in his infrastructure proposal.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-K]Y) said on Thursday that Republicans “haven’t given up hope”  on a bipartisan infrastructure deal:

“Yeah, I think it’s clearly possible. We haven’t given up on reaching an agreement on infrastructure. … I think there’s a good chance we can get there.”