Biden lays out framework for spending plan, but still needs Democratic support

WASHINGTON, D.C. (NBC) – It’s a nail-biter in the nation’s capital as President Biden tries to secure a deal with Democrats on his sweeping social spending and climate change plan.

The president is pressing for a big win before he takes to the world stage in Europe to ask foreign leaders for their own commitments to the same causes.

President Biden made a detour to Capitol Hill Thursday morning trying to seal the deal with congressional Democrats before take-off for critical summits in Europe.

The president announced a new $1.75 trillion framework for his climate and social spending plans paid for through new taxes, including one aimed at billionaires.

Though, so far, neither moderate holdouts nor progressives have given a firm commitment.

Biden said, “It’s a framework that will create millions of jobs, grow the economy, invest in our nation and our people.”

The new proposal includes child care, universal pre-k, expanded health care coverage including Medicare for hearing services, and investments to curb climate change. But several top progressive priorities are gone, including free community college, expanded Medicare coverage for dental and vision, and paid family and medical leave—scuttled by cost objections from moderate senate Democrat Joe Manchin.

Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) said, “What I don’t like is this idea that one guy would stand in the way of doing it.”

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi called for a vote Thursday on the bipartisan infrastructure bill that passed the Senate more than two months ago, but progressives are refusing to sign off until the larger package is set.

Chair, House Progressive Caucus Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.) said, “Our members are enthusiastic about voting for both bills when that text is ready.”

All Republicans oppose the president’s plans, but it’s divisions within his own party sending him off to pressure foreign leaders for key climate change and economic policies without a deal of his own.

Just to underscore how much is riding on getting to a deal: according to two sources, President Biden told Democrats behind closed doors that majorities in the House and Senate and his presidency will be determined by what happens in the next week.

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