UPDATED 6:38 AM PT – Friday, May 28, 2021
A group of Republican senators countered Joe Biden’s massive infrastructure plan with a more modest amount during a news conference at the Capitol on Thursday. The GOP lawmakers made the offer that proposed a $928 billion plan to be spent over eight years.
The plan would allocate an additional $91 billion to roads and bridges, $48 billion to water resources and $25 billion to airports. It would also provide a one-time increase in broadband investments.
Biden’s latest offer to Republicans landed at $1.7 trillion, which is $600 billion less than his original offer. However, GOP lawmakers stand strong in their decision to keep Biden from raising corporate taxes. Therefore, the discussion continues.
The good news is: @EPWGOP and @EPWcmte have already unanimously passed two bipartisan bills that share the ideas within our counteroffer.
This is proof we CAN work together on infrastructure. I’ll continue working w/ @potus and my colleagues to build off of this momentum. pic.twitter.com/9SEWMiXeH9
— Shelley Moore Capito (@SenCapito) May 27, 2021
Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) said the small group of Republicans believe their counteroffer is the right step towards a bipartisan compromise.
“We have achieved that goal with this counter offer, but we also have done something that has stayed true to what our beliefs are when we very first started this endeavor,” she stated. “And that is sticking to core physical infrastructure.”
The group has maintained a strong stance against Biden’s tax hikes and have continued to advocate for the reallocation of unused COVID-19 funds.
“The second thing that we’ve been very very clear on every single time we’ve had a discussion is that we’re not raising taxes.” Moore Capito continued. “We believe that the 2017 tax reform contributed significantly to an enabling us to achieve the best economy of my lifetime and that’s no small thing.”
Meanwhile, Biden has set a Memorial Day deadline to come to an agreement on an infrastructure package. He went to Ohio Thursday to try and drum up support for his massive $4 trillion version of the infrastructure and spending plans.
Republicans have criticized his plan because it raises taxes on Americans while allocating funds to progressive agenda items like expanding the welfare state. A growing number of Ohio business owners are also expressing concern over his plan because they believe it, along with his previous stimulus bill, discourages people from going back to work.
Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine (R) has joined several other governors in opting out of the federal pandemic unemployment program in June, months before it expires in September. He said he’s cutting the program early to get more people back to work sooner.