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Biden with Sen. Kyrsten Sinema and other bipartisan senators in June. Photo: Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images

President Biden has kept a public distance from Hill fights that'll help define his legacy, based on confidence that Dems will ultimately be with him despite bucking and bellyaching.

Between the lines: "He's not gonna beg," said an official with firsthand knowledge of the president's mindset. "His view is: 'You're Democrats, and you're with your president or you're not.'"

The hardball is driven by several factors, according to people who have discussed the negotiations with Biden:

  1. He's from a generation of politicians for whom party loyalty is automatic.
  2. He's confident Speaker Pelosi will deliver.
  3. He believes he'll ultimately get a big win.

Backstory: Biden's approach is shaped partly by his 36 years as a senator — and sense that presidents should demand outcomes rather than details.

  • Another twist is Biden's place in the shifting Democratic Party. For decades, he was on the liberal end. But in the 2020 primary field, he was centrist.
  • So it'd be politically risky for him to be the tip of the spear on tangling with progressives. His approach: Let Pelosi and Bernie do it.

Biden advisers say he's lobbying LBJ-style: making his case on merits, loyalty, politics — and arm twisting.

  • Biden met separately at the White House yesterday with Sens. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.).

The president postponed a vaccination-themed trip to Chicago today so he can stay back to lobby.

  • Besides Biden's meetings, White House aides report 260 "engagements" on the legislation with members and top advisers.

Go deeper: Progressive leader calls Sinema's threat insane

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Go deeper

First look: Sinema targeted with $1 million ad buy

Ad screenshot. Courtesy: Defending American Democracy

The bipartisan group Defending American Democracy is spending $1 million on a TV ad targeting Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.), Axios has learned.

Why it matters: Sinema, along with Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va), has rejected proposals to lower the filibuster threshold to pass election reform legislation with only Democratic votes — while voting rights is front and center for the Democratic Party.

Pelosi: Jan 6. was "as if somebody in the White House dropped a bomb on Congress"

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said that the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol was “as if somebody in the White House dropped a bomb” on Congress, according to excerpts of an NBC interview that will air later Thursday.

Why it matters: Pelosi has been unsparing in her criticism of former President Trump, indicating last month that she blamed him for the Capitol insurrection and saying she would "never forgive" him.

Biden's fiery 2024 preview

President Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris speak with reporters after their speeches Thursday. Photo: Ken Cedeno/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

President Biden says holding former President Trump accountable for the Jan. 6 attack is about confronting the truth so America can move on.

  • "I’m crystal clear about the threats America faces," he said at the Capitol today in a fiery speech on the anniversary of the riot. "But I also know that our darkest days can lead to light and hope."

Between the lines: Biden also previewed themes for 2024 — especially if there's a Biden-Trump rematch.