Pelosi: ‘Seems Self-Evident’ Reconciliation Bill Will Be Less Than $3.5 Trillion

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) answers questions from reporters during her weekly news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., August 6, 2021. (Gabrielle Crockett/Reuters)

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi appeared to acknowledge that the cost of the Biden administration’s $3.5 trillion spending resolution will ultimately be lowered before passage, in an interview on ABC’s This Week.

The House Budget Committee approved the resolution on Saturday, although Democratic representative Scott Peters (Calif.) joined Republicans on the committee to oppose the measure.

“I know the Budget Committee passed a resolution calling for $3.5 trillion, but it sounds like you acknowledge that the final number is going to be somewhat smaller than that,” This Week host George Stephanopoulos told Pelosi.

“Yeah, I mean that seems self-evident,” Pelosi said. The Speaker then dismissed disagreements among Democrats over whether to back the resolution.

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“We have some, shall we say, ‘birdbath’ kinds of things,” Pelosi said, dismissing what she called the “exploitation of a few people not in agreement being called a division in the Democratic party.”

Pelosi added, “everybody overwhelmingly, and I think even those who want a smaller number, supports the vision of the president.”

Congressional Democrats and the Biden administration are hoping to pass initiatives including funding for universal preschool and community college, extensions of child tax credits, and various climate change policies via budget reconciliation. However, Senator Joe Manchin (D., W. Va.) has already stated that he will not vote for a $3.5 trillion plan.

Democrats are attempting to pass the spending package via budget reconciliation rules in the Senate, meaning a simple majority of votes would suffice to approve the measure instead of the 60 votes needed to avoid a filibuster. With just 50 Democrats in the Senate, a budget resolution would fail without the support of all Democrats plus the vice president.

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