House Democrats plow ahead with social spending bill
House Democratic leaders say they're undeterred by a poor showing in Tuesday’s elections, with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announcing steps to advance President Biden's $1.75 trillion social spending package.
Driving the news: Pelosi announced in a letter to House Democrats new text for the bill, which will be presented to the House Rules Committee on Wednesday, a step toward an eventual vote in the House. She also said it will include a provision for paid family leave.
Between the lines: In the letter, Pelosi wrote: “We must strive to find common ground in the legislation.”
- "Today is another momentous day in our historic effort to make the future better for the American people," which underscores that this is a concrete step forward for [the Build Back Better Agenda].
- Pelosi is proposing four weeks of paid family and medical leave, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), who has lobbied moderate Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) hard on allowing paid leave to be included in the bill, said in a statement.
What they're saying: Asked if Tuesday's results, in which Democrat Terry McAuliffe lost decisively to Republican Glenn Youngkin in Virginia's gubernatorial race, would change the agenda in Congress, Pelosi replied bluntly: “No.”
- In New Jersey, Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy also was in a closer-than-expected re-election campaign.
- House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn (D-S.C.) echoed that sentiment, telling Punchbowl News that McAuliffe’s loss “just reinforces the fact that we need to get these things done.”
Editor's note: This story has been updated with Gillibrand's statement.