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Axios' Hans Nichols and Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.). Photo: Axios

Republican refusal to address climate change is "the major stumbling block" to bipartisan consensus on a proposed bill core to Biden's infrastructure package, Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) said at an Axios virtual event on Wednesday.

Why it matters: DeFazio, who chairs the House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee, described his bill as "probably the single largest portion of the American Jobs Plan. He said that although Republicans and Democrats on the House transportation committee "can work together on a lot of things," GOP members "just will not address climate change."

What he's saying: "They do not want my surface transportation bill to address climate change because they can't say or they don't believe in it," he said.

  • "And for the wastewater bill, they say it's too big, even though it's only a fraction of the nation's needs. And it also has a climate title to capture methane from sewer plants and generate electricity. So they they object to that."
  • "So that's a big stumbling block. I reached out to them. We can work together on a lot of things, but they just will not address climate change."

What to watch: "There's a few Republicans who will admit to climate change on the House side, I don't know the Senate that well," DeFazio said.

  • "They do have some climate provisions in the in the bill that came out of the committee in the Senate. Senator Carper's committee, they are way smaller than mine, but they're in there and they are making a nod or some recognition toward climate change."

Watch the full event here.

Go deeper

Updated Sep 16, 2021 - Energy & Environment

UN climate summit warning signs are adding up

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

There are growing signs that make-or-break climate talks in Glasgow, Scotland, this fall won’t produce tangible plans for emissions cuts that keep the Paris agreement’s targets viable.

Why it matters: The climate summit is billed by world and environmental leaders as the last, best hope for securing the global commitments needed to get countries on track to avoiding potentially catastrophic levels of climate change during the next several decades.

Sep 15, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Scoop: Biden to host Boris Johnson at the White House next week

President Biden speaks at the White House during a virtual event with U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Wednesday. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

President Biden plans to host British Prime Minister Boris Johnson at the White House next week, according to people familiar with the preparations.

Why it matters: Rewarding Johnson with a White House visit is another indication that the two leaders plan to work collaboratively on COVID-19, China and climate change.

Sep 17, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Scoop: Biden bombs with Manchin

Then-Vice President Joe Biden conducts a ceremonial swearing-in for Sen. Joe Manchin in 2010. Photo: Tom Williams/Roll Call

President Biden failed to persuade Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) to agree to spending $3.5 trillion on the Democrats' budget reconciliation package during their Oval Office meeting on Wednesday, people familiar with the matter tell Axios.

Why it matters: Defying a president from his own party — face-to-face — is the strongest indication yet Manchin is serious about cutting specific programs and limiting the price tag of any potential bill to $1.5 trillion. His insistence could blow up the deal for progressives and others.