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Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Senate Democrats' new deal on a budget outline sets the stage for their fraught effort to seek unprecedented clean energy spending and incentives.

Driving the news: Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Budget Committee members on Wednesday night announced an agreement to try to steer $3.5 trillion into Medicare, climate, education and other priorities.

Why it matters: The preliminary deal is a precursor crafting a "reconciliation" package of programs — such as expanded tax breaks for renewable power, new electric vehicle incentives and more — that's immune from filibuster.

The intrigue: The $3.5 trillion figure is lower than the $6 trillion Budget Committee Chairman Bernie Sanders and other progressive Democrats wanted, Axios' Alayna Treene reports.

Quick take: Initial comments last night from progressive Senate Democrats nonetheless praised the package — an early sign that the topline spending is enough to satisfy climate-focused Senate members. But specifics are still absent.

What they're saying: Sanders pointed to extreme weather events in the west as he touted the compromise.

  • He warned that absent a transition from fossil fuels, "the planet we're going to be leaving our children and our grandchildren will be increasingly unhealthy, and uninhabitable."
  • "Today, we begin the process of having this great country lead the world in transforming our energy system," Sanders added.
  • Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse signaled approval in a tweet that notes the combined tally for the Democrats' plan and the bipartisan infrastructure framework.

What's next: The uncertain process of getting moderate and progressive Democrats alike to vote for the budget outline and the substantive reconciliation package that will be crafted in multiple committees.

Go deeper

23 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Scoop: Manchin's red lines

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) has told the White House the child tax credit must include a firm work requirement and family income cap in the $60,000 range, people familiar with the matter tell Axios.

Why it matters: While Manchin’s demands would dramatically weaken one of President Biden’s signature programs to help working families, they also would reduce the package’s overall costs.

7 mins ago - World

U.S. envoy to visit Sudan as "most dangerous" crisis intensifies

The sit-in in Khartoum. Photo: Mahmoud Hjaj/Anadolu Agency via Getty

U.S. envoy for the Horn of Africa Jeffrey Feltman will visit Khartoum this week amid what Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok has called the “worst and most dangerous" crisis of Sudan’s transition to democracy, two sources with direct knowledge tell Axios.

Driving the news: Roughly 2,000-3,000 people had joined a sit-in in Khartoum as of this afternoon, per Reuters, after protesters massed over the weekend to call on the military to bring down the government. The protests came just four weeks after a failed military coup.

Trump sues National Archives, Jan. 6 committee to block records request

Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

President Trump filed a lawsuit Monday seeking to block the National Archives from releasing White House records to the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection, citing executive privilege.

Why it matters: It's the latest escalation in Trump's campaign to disrupt the committee's sweeping probe into the circumstances surrounding Jan. 6, including his actions and communications leading up to the Capitol attack.

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