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White House press secretary Jen Psaki outlines benefits of the infrastructure bill on Monday. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Top Biden officials have meetings planned with more than a dozen congressional committees this week as they try to pass a multi-trillion-dollar infrastructure package on an accelerated timeline, senior White House sources tell Axios.

Why it matters: Democrats are anxious to pass their massive tax-and-spend package before the August recess. If negotiations stretch beyond the summer break, the chances increase they drag into 2022, and it's hard to get members to take tough votes during election years.

The details: White House legislative affairs director Louisa Terrell and National Economic Council director Brian Deese have set up multiple meetings each day.

  • The sessions involve members of Congress and National Economic Council staff and a group of Cabinet secretaries the White House has tapped to sell infrastructure.
  • The infrastructure proposal touches on issues ranging from broadband internet to housing to climate. Cabinet leaders plan to meet with members of committees that intersect with their areas of expertise.
  • Housing and Development Secretary Marcia Fudge is spending time discussing housing, for example, while Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo is working on the specifics of international competitiveness.

Between the lines: Officials from both parties are deeply skeptical any deal can be hatched that would win the support of the 10 Republicans needed to pass major legislation.

  • Sen. Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) had not yet left today's infrastructure outreach meeting with President Biden before his staff began tweeting in opposition to the proposal, Axios' Kadia Goba noted.

Go deeper

Exclusive: White House targets McConnell, McCarthy in infrastructure push

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

The White House is selling President Biden's $2.2 trillion infrastructure plan by projecting how much it will help each state — starting with Kentucky and California.

Why it matters: Tagging the homes of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) not only puts them on the defensive, but warns other Republicans they'll have to explain why this bridge or that highway isn't something they can approve.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Apr 12, 2021 - Energy & Environment

Why carbon pricing is unlikely to play a big role in climate talks

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

The problem for backers of U.S. carbon pricing isn't that there's no Beltway interest — some of Washington's most powerful officials and K Street interests like the idea. It's that the timing never seems to work out.

Driving the news: "President Biden believes that at some point in time we need to find out a way to have a price on carbon that’s effective," John Kerry, President Biden's special climate envoy, said at a briefing in India last week.

House members still reeling from Capitol siege

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

House Democrats still reeling from the Jan. 6 Capitol assault have found a new refuge: a group text chain in which they share everything from their anxieties to recipes and other attention-shifters.

What they're saying: “I liken it to that experience when I was in combat,” said Rep. Jason Crow (D-Colo.), a decorated Army Ranger and veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan who's one of about 20 members in the “Gallery Group."

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