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Democrats put the Social Policy Bill on hold in face of Moderate Revolt

Democrats put the Social Policy Bill on hold in face of Moderate Revolt

But if anything, the prospect of losses deepened the divisions imperiling both pillars of the Mr. Biden’s agenda. House leaders started the day aiming for votes to advance the social policy bill and clear the infrastructure measure — the largest investment in the nation’s aging public works in a decade — for his signature.

But by midday, their efforts had stalled as a 15-minute House vote dragged on more than seven hours — a record, lawmakers said, for the longest vote in the chamber — as Ms. Pelosi toiled to line up support. Republicans, united in opposition of the social policy bill, and gleeful at the chaos, forced additional procedural vote to further derail it.

“Where are the Democrats today?” said Representative Kevin McCarthy of California, the minority leader. “Breaking their own rules, setting new records just keeping votes open, and trying to intimidate and bully their own members to vote for something.”

The delay was painfully familiar to Mr. Biden and Democratic lawmakers, who had tried twice in the past few weeks to push the pair bill through the House. However, their plans were thwarted by internal divisions. However, there was little evidence that Mr. Biden and House leadership had resolved the deep mistrust among the ideological factions.

At least four House Democrats — Representatives Jared Golden of Maine, Kurt Schrader of Oregon, Ed Case of Hawaii and Stephanie Murphy of Florida — were demanding an official cost analysis from the Congressional Budget Office before voting on the social safety net package. If every Republican opposed the legislation, that would be enough Democrats for it to be thrown out.

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Democratic leaders tried to use the analysis of the nonpartisan Joint Committee on Taxation, and a White House analysis on spending costs to win over the holdouts. Top White House aides were seen entering Ms. Pelosi’s office as party leaders struggled to win over the moderates.

“It’s a very difficult task, and we’re working on it,” said Representative Steny H. Hoyer of Maryland, the majority leader, as he brushed away questions Friday about whether Democrats would have the necessary votes.


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