Joe Biden's top priority since passing his economy-crushing boondoggle of a COVID “relief bill” has been to get an infrastructure package done. The problem is that the filibuster exists, and while Joe Manchin was willing to push through the first monstrosity via reconciliation, he's said he doesn't want to do that again. That means that Republican votes are almost certainly going to be needed to get anything done.
Enter West Virginian Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, who has been acting as the chief negotiator for the GOP regarding the matter. Capito is now saying that Joe Biden has blown up negotiations after initially asking Republicans to submit a $1 trillion proposal. They did so in the spirit of “bi-partisanship” and the response was apparently rhetorical middle finger.
Sen. Capito: “I spoke with the president this afternoon, and he ended our infrastructure negotiations.” pic.twitter.com/xQN6fzMrOR
— Nicholas Wu (@nicholaswu12) June 8, 2021
I've got some thoughts, not the least of which is asking why Republicans were ever willing to offer Joe Biden a freaking $1 trillion infrastructure package in the first place? As I've written before, there is absolutely no reason that the GOP should be pining to give Democrats anything they want (see Republicans Fold Like a Cheap Suit and Prepare to Hand Joe Biden His Top Priority). Did Democrats negotiate in good faith with Republicans on infrastructure (or anything) when Donald Trump was president? No, they didn't because they understand that as an opposition party, you only will be actually being oppositional.
Secondly, why are Republicans making their red-line corporate tax rates and not, you know, spending $1 trillion in a time that inflation is crushing the middle class? This again looks like the GOP putting big business above their voter base. There should have been no negotiations at all here, not because Biden wants to make Amazon pay more in taxes, but because pumping more money into the hands of special interests hurts normal people and devalues their savings.
With that, as stupid as the GOP has been up to this point in trying to “negotiate” with Biden, they've now been handed a golden opportunity: The chance to walk away.
This isn't complicated. Stop begging for Democrats to abuse you and instead do exactly what they did to President Trump. Say no to every bit of this idiocy and laugh in the face of Chuck Schumer, Nancy Pelosi, and Joe Biden. Stop trying to find a middle ground where there isn't any. This country does not have a major infrastructure problem, and it does not have the ability to keep absorbing these levels of inflation. There is zero reason to spend over a trillion dollars so Elizabeth Warren can get free child care and Pete Buttigieg can get his useless choo-choos.
Capito and her crew never have never been negotiating in this in the first place, but if they won't take this way out after it's been handed to them on a platter, then what exactly are they doing? Stop the failure theater and become an opposition party that crushes the left in the next election.