Handful of Republicans plan to buck leadership and vote yes on infrastructure bill

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Republicans will not be united in opposing the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act when it comes up for a vote in the House on Friday, with a handful of members saying that they will buck leadership and support the bill.

House Republican leadership on Wednesday announced that they will whip votes against the $1.2 trillion Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, despite it getting the support of 19 Senate Republicans, due to Democrats aiming to pass the bill alongside their sweeping social programs reconciliation bill of up to $3.5 trillion. Together, Democrats call it the “Build Back Better” plan.

Internal Democratic sparring between centrists and the far-left wing over the timing and content of the reconciliation bill threatens to sink the infrastructure bill if it comes up for a vote. Members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus plan to vote against the infrastructure bill if it comes up for a vote before the reconciliation bill, and Democrats have only three votes to spare before needing Republican support to pass a bill in the House.

But some interest groups hope that enough Republicans might support the bill for it to pass anyway. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce compiled a whip list of 57 House Republicans who they plan to lobby to support the infrastructure bill.

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Some of those on the list are undecided on how they will vote.

“I'm thinking about thinking about it,” Florida Rep. Maria Elvira Salazar told the Washington Examiner on Friday.

A spokesperson for South Dakota Rep. Dusty Johnson said that he will “see how things play out with reconciliation before he makes a final determination on how he will vote.”

But several of those on the list have committed to voting against the bill.

“I'm going to be voting against the infrastructure bill,” South Carolina Rep. Nancy Mace told the Washington Examiner on Friday. She expressed concern with the federal government, saying, “When you tack on the $1.2 trillion plus the $3.5 trillion, you know, and all the spending that we're talking about, all the tax increases — I think that's a terrible decision to do coming out of COVID.”

The offices of Reps. Bryan Steil of Wisconsin, Chris Stewart of Utah, and Mike Gallagher of Wisconsin said that they will vote no. Iowa Rep. Randy Feenstra also told the Washington Examiner on Friday that he plans to vote against the bill.

With Congressional Progressive Caucus Chairwoman Pramila Jayapal of Washington state estimating on Friday that at least 50 members of her caucus will vote against the infrastructure bill, it is unlikely that the efforts to pressure Republicans to vote yes can make up for the wave of left-wing no votes.

New York Rep. John Katko said that he is not sure how many of his Republican colleagues will join him in supporting the bill. “They're whipping the crap out of it today,” he told reporters on Friday.

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Here are the House Republicans who say that they will or may vote in favor of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act:

Nebraska Rep. Don Bacon: “I intend to vote for the hard infrastructure bill as long as it’s not combined with the Bernie Sanders $3.5T bill,” Bacon said in a statement. “Our constituents want to see Congress actually solve a problem and stop the rabid partisanship they see every night on TV.”

Pennsylvania Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick, a co-chairperson of the bipartisan Problem Solver’s Caucus, told multiple outlets that he plans to vote for the bill.

New York Rep. John Katko: Katko’s office told reporters at Forbes and the Hill that he will vote for the infrastructure bill.

Illinois Rep. Adam Kinzinger said on CNN this week: “I think we need to allow members to vote on a bipartisan bill as they wish. There is concern, of course, with what you’re seeing on the Democratic side, where progressives are saying we have to pass the $3.5 trillion before we can even talk about this $1.5 trillion … Members of the Republicans that want to vote for the bipartisan bill, you shouldn’t whip against it. I intended to vote for it. I think there will be a number of people joining me."

New York Rep. Nicole Malliotakis: A spokesperson for Malliotakis said Friday that she is “in the process of going through the bill to see how it impacts her district” but is “leaning towards a yes so long as the infrastructure package stands on its own.”

New York Rep. Tom Reed: "I'm a hard yes," Reed said on CNN on Friday. "It's a good bill. It's a compromise bill. That, to me, is good legislation, sound policy." He estimated that 10 to 20 Republicans will support the bill.

Michigan Rep. Fred Upton: A spokesperson for Upton said Friday that he will support the $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill.

New Jersey Rep. Jeff Van Drew told Forbes that he supports the bill and disagrees that it is linked to the reconciliation bill. “One is hard, real infrastructure … the other bill is a huge spending boondoggle.”

Alaska Rep. Don Young’s spokesperson told the Washington Examiner that he “is a yes on the bill as-is in the Senate, which means he’s a yes when it gets to the House floor."

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Tags: News, Congress, Infrastructure, House Republicans, Kevin McCarthy

Original Author: Emily Brooks

Original Location: Handful of Republicans plan to buck leadership and vote yes on infrastructure bill

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