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Sen. Joe Manchin (D-West Va.). Photo by Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

The bipartisan group of senators working on an economic stimulus deal have received assurances from Senate GOP leadership that their $748 billion proposal will be used as the framework for a relief package that Congress hopes to pass by the end of the week, Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) tells the Axios Re:Cap podcast.

Why it matters: This is the most compromise we've seen from Congress to date in trying to pass a new round of economic stimulus, as the country grapples with its worst-ever surge of COVID-19 infections, hospitalizations and deaths.

"They're basically taking our bill and putting it into the omnibus bill, which has to pass at the end [of the week] ... They're using our template. Our bill. They're taking our bill section by section because it's already been vetted... [Republican leadership is] going to acknowledge that today as a framework they're working off of."
— Joe Manchin to Axios Re:Cap

Manchin added that he and others in the bipartisan, bicameral group of legislators who have proposed this two-pronged emergency stimulus have spoken with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell about integrating their bill into the final package, and that he said most, if not all, of their bill will be tied into a final deal.

  • The $748 billion package focuses on areas of broad agreement, including a continuation of enhanced unemployment benefits and reauthorization of the PPP program for small business loans.
  • The portion not included is the smaller, more controversial $160 billion bill that includes state and local aid (favored by Democrats) and liability protections for businesses (favored by Republicans).

The other side: A Senate GOP leadership aide tells Axios, “Joe Manchin wants to be the hero here and say, ‘I gave Mitch McConnell the bill that is going to be signed into law.’ That is not what's going to happen."

  • "What happened is Manchin handed him a bill, and that bill looks a lot like what we've been arguing over since April. If you take the 'modsquad' bill and set it down on a table next to our bill from a couple of weeks ago that the president endorsed, you'll see there are a lot of policies that overlapped," the aide said.
  • The aide also acknowledged that "there's a very high likelihood that almost all" of the provisions in the bipartisan group's $748 billion bill will be reflected in the final package because "it's not that different" from what both parties have supported already.

What's next: The people who make the final call — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, McConnell, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy — will meet Tuesday afternoon. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin will join by phone.

The full Axios Re:Cap interview with Sen. Manchin can be found here.

Go deeper

Young people want checks on Big Tech's power

Data: Generation Lab; Chart: Sara Wise/Axios

The next generation of college-educated Americans thinks social media companies have too much power and influence on politics and need more government regulation, according to a new survey by Generation Lab for Axios.

Why it matters: The findings follow an election dominated by rampant disinformation about voting fraud on social media; companies' fraught efforts to stifle purveyors of disinformation including former President Trump; and a deadly Jan. 6 insurrection over the election organized largely online.

Updated 56 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Omicron dashboard

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

  1. Health: The end of the Omicron wave is in sight — Transplants rebound from COVID lull — Omicron hits American hospitals disproportionately hard
  2. Vaccines: WHO: No evidence that healthy children, teens need boosters — Kids' COVID vaccination rates are particularly low in rural America — Starbucks drops worker vaccine or test requirement after SCOTUS ruling
  3. Politics: Biden concedes U.S. should have done more testing — Arizona says it "will not be intimidated" by Biden on anti-mask school policies— Government website for free COVID tests launches early
  4. World: WHO: COVID health emergency could end this year — Greece imposes vaccine mandate for people 60 and older
  5. Variant tracker

Highlights from Biden's marathon 2-hour press conference

President Biden answers questions during a news conference in the East Room of the White House on Jan. 19. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

President Biden Wednesday marked the end of his first year in office with a marathon press conference from the White House East Room, during which he defended his record in office and made headlines on several fronts.

Why it matters: It was only Biden's second solo presser while in office. The president said he would support splitting his flagship budget bill, the Build Back Better Act, to pass it in increments. He also called on the Federal Reserve to do more against inflation, and predicted that Russia will invade Ukraine.

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