If centrist senators Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema are still on the fence about using the budget reconciliation process to bypass a Republican filibuster and pass President Biden's "Build Back Better" infrastructure proposal, they ought to consider what Republicans are saying today.
Rather than say what elements of the proposal they might support, Republicans led by Mitch McConnell vowed to fight the passage of any eventual legislation that comes to the floor.
“I’m going to fight them every step of the way, because I think this is the wrong prescription for America,” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell told a news conference in Owensboro, Kentucky.
“That package that they’re putting together now, as much as we would like to address infrastructure, is not going to get support from our side,” McConnell added.
Republicans also haven't shared what their own ideas for rebuilding the nation's infrastructure are because they don't have any ideas. They don't do policy. They don't govern.
In their hearts, Manchin and Sinema may not want to use reconciliation to bypass McConnell, but it's going to be very difficult say 'No' if the spending package is well tailored for their states. It's also difficult to say 'No' when McConnell and the GOP are not even pretending they want to work together.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says she wants to pass Biden's proposal by July so none of this is going to happen anytime soon, but I feel relatively confident that it will happen. Weirdly, I feel like absolute GOP opposition actually improves the chances of passing it in this case.
Passing a large package this summer would mean the additional spending will be quite evident across the holidays and next spring when everyone hits the campaign trail.