September 29, 2021
D.C. News
  • Centrist Democrats are weighing whether new Medicare benefits should go only to lower-income Americans as they look for ways to cut the cost of their party’s sweeping domestic spending bill. Senator Joe Manchin and Representative Henry Cuellar have said benefits need to be tied to income and to means-test “everything we can” to reduce the size of the once-$3.5 trillion spending package. Meanwhile, Progressive House Democrats are threatening to block a vote on an infrastructure bill unless Democrats reach a deal on Biden’s larger bill. (Articles here, here, here, here, and here)
  • Senate Democrats are seeking a vote today on a stopgap funding bill to avert a government shutdown, but without a provision to increase the federal debt limit. The bill extends funding through December 3. Yesterday, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell blocked an effort by Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer to bypass the 60-vote legislative filibuster on a debt ceiling hike and let Democrats raise it without GOP support. White House press secretary Jen Psaki said that President Joe Biden opposes changing the filibuster to suspend or raise the debt ceiling. Earlier in the day, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen warned congressional leaders that her department could run out of money by October 18. President Biden canceled a trip to Chicago today so he could stay at the White House and negotiate with lawmakers – specifically Senators Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema, the two holdout Democratic senators. (Articles here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here)