Update on the current attempt by conservative members of Congress (including Hawaii Congressman Ed Case) to derail/slow/stop the expansion of affordable housing, health care, child and family support, and climate change mitigation.
President Biden and the Democratic Majority in Congress are proposing to invest $3.5 trillion in social, human, and environmental infrastructure. The proposal would significantly increase investment in healthcare, affordable housing, environmental protection, education, children and family support, and climate change.
Hawaii Congressman Ed Case, together with 8 (now 9) other Democrats in Congress have joined with the Republican Minority to block its passage.
Bottom line: At the end of the day, the effort by Congressman Case and his conservative friends in the House to block this effort failed. Mahalo plenty to all of you who took the time to call and email the Congressman to express your concern and encourage him to change his position.
Of course, this is politics and Case will claim he won and accomplished his goal of ensuring the separation of two very important measures.
The truth is that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi agreed to what she had already agreed to, which was the passage of the “bricks and mortar” infrastructure bill by October 1st which is the day it needs to be passed anyway to maintain the continuity of prior funding.
After all the drama she appeased Case and the conservatives and “agreed to hold a vote on the infrastructure bill by September 27” which she was planning on doing anyway in order to meet her own October 1 deadline.
Please read the below and make up your own mind.
Civil Beat – After holding out, Case backs $3.5 trillion budget deal https://www.civilbeat.org/beat/after-holding-out-case-backs-3-5t-budget-spending-deal/
I encourage readers to also take the time to review the comment section and offer comments of their own.
Here is a particularly insightful and incitable comment from one Civil Beat reader – “Bart 808”.
“Please stop calling him and his centrist clique “moderate”. That is a biased word that implies he is the sober voice of reason while the others are immoderate. Just call him a conservative Democrat.
Ed tried to portray his effort as though he was standing up to Pelosi. This story repeats his framework when he talks about him opposing “Pelosi’s plan.” The plan to hold off on voting for the $1T infrastructure bill was worked out in an agreement between Biden, Pelosi, Schumer, and Senate budget chair Bernie Sanders. It had the support of almost all Democrats in the Senate, except Manchin and Sienna, as well as of the vast majority of Ed Case’s Democratic colleagues in the House.
As Case and the “Sabotage Caucus” soon found out. They were isolated from their colleagues who did not appreciate the grandstanding that put at risk two massive and much-needed infusions of money into infrastructure. Objectively, Ed was aligning with Mitch McConnell and in opposition the almost all the other Democrats. Not just Pelosi. He overplayed his hand. Not for the first time.”
More reading on the topic:
The Hill – Pelosi frames deal with centrists on infrastructure as a clarification – https://thehill.com/homenews/house/569350-pelosi-frames-deal-with-centrists-on-infrastructure-as-a-clarification
The Hill – Progressives dig in for fall fight with centrists – https://thehill.com/policy/transportation/569425-progressives-dig-in-for-fall-fight-with-centrists
The Capital Gazette – Moderates bring House to a standstill
I want to reiterate one point, one more time: These 10 members of Congress are not “moderates”. Rather they are conservative corporatists, masquerading as moderates while cloaking themselves as Democrats.
What keeps them awake at night is not the man or woman living under the bridge, and it’s not the existential threat of climate change, nor is it the millions of innocent civilians that die in endless wars. What keeps them awake at night is worrying about the health and welfare of corporations and making sure the 1% is treated “fairly”.
Mahalo to all for helping to spread the word and for taking the time to call and email Congressman Ed Case on this incredibly important issue.
Executive Director – Pono Hawaii Initiative
Board President – Hawaii Alliance for Progressive Action
Former Vice-Chair Democratic Party of Hawaii, former Hawaii State Senator, formerly younger than I am now.
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