Politics Sinema says she will move forward with Senate Democrats'...

Sinema says she will move forward with Senate Democrats’ climate, health and tax bills


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Sen. Kirsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) said Thursday she would “move forward” with Senate Democrats’ spending bill to deal with climate change, health care and tax reform.

J. Scott Applewhite/AP

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J. Scott Applewhite/AP

Sen. Kirsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) said Thursday she would “move forward” with Senate Democrats’ spending bill to deal with climate change, health care and tax reform.

J. Scott Applewhite/AP

Arizona Sen. Kirsten Sinema announced late Thursday that she would “move forward” with Democrats’ massive climate, prescription drug and spending bill, after Democrats agreed with Sinema’s concerns about the legislation.

Cinema’s announcement left the bill deadlocked by Democrats, who need all 50 Democratic votes across the board for the bill to pass, with Vice President Kamala Harris casting the tiebreaker vote. The legislation reinforces key parts of President Biden’s domestic agenda.

In a statement, Cinema said, “We have agreed to eliminate the carry interest tax provision, protect advanced manufacturing and boost our clean energy economy in the Senate budget reconciliation act. Subject to review by members of parliament, I will move forward.”

In recent days, Sinema has raised concerns about the bill’s portion of the bill aimed at reducing the carry interest tax loophole. Democrats say the measure would have added about $14 billion in funding.

In the deal, Cinema was also able to secure an increase in the drought resilience fund and a 1% excise tax on stock buybacks, a source familiar with the deal said.

Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said in a statement that the deal among Democratic senators preserves key elements of the bill.

“I am happy to report that we have reached an agreement on this Inflation Act I am confident that the entire Senate Democratic Conference will have the support,” Schumer said.

“I have had many productive discussions with our council members over the past three days and we have addressed many of the important issues they have raised.”

Schumer added that the final bill will be introduced on Saturday, when the Senate is back in session.

“We have taken another important step toward reducing inflation and lowering the cost of living for American families,” President Biden said in a statement late Thursday.

“I expect the Senate to take up this legislation and pass it as quickly as possible,” Biden said in a statement from the White House.

Legislation is being passed through the budget reconciliation process, which usually blocks the 60 votes needed to pass a bill. Senate lawmakers are still working through the text to ensure the legislation can be voted on through the reconciliation process.

Once the bill is brought to the floor — which Schumer says will happen Saturday afternoon — Democrats and Republicans will debate for up to 20 hours evenly split.

After debate on a bill ends, a process known as a vote-a-rama begins and senators can introduce as many amendments as they want, a process that usually lasts late into the night.

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