House Dems punt infrastructure again, pass stop-gap highway bill

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The House of Representatives passed a stop-gap measure to reauthorize transportation funding on Thursday evening after Democratic leadership opted to punt a vote on a sweeping $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill.

That measure was put off for a third time after progressives threatened to tank the legislation without movement on President Biden’s $1.75 trillion social spending bill. 

White marble exterior of the United States Capitol
The bipartisan infrastructure bill was put off for a third time.
Getty Images

The decision to extend highway funding comes in the wake of Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) calling on members of her caucus to support the Senate-passed bipartisan measure, a meeting in which President Biden attempted to rally support around the measures. 

“Let’s not just keep having postponements and leaving any doubt as to when this will happen,” Pelosi told reporters on Thursday afternoon. 

Cars and trucks go past a crew painting a line on interstate 78
The stop-gap transportation bill will keep the Highway Trust Fund funded through Dec. 3.
Ben Hasty/MediaNews Group/Reading Eagle via Getty Images

But despite her pleas for members of her party not to “embarrass” the president ahead of his trip overseas by voting down the infrastructure bill during the caucus meeting, progressives asserted that the framework was not enough to win their support on the “hard infrastructure” bill, with some voicing they would lose leverage as the party looks to move forward with the reconciliation bill. 

The stop-gap transportation bill is slated to keep the Highway Trust Fund funded through Dec. 3. Congress passed a similar measure earlier this month after the House scrapped delayed plans to vote on the bipartisan bill. 

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