CNN's Keilar Grills Progressive Caucus Chair Pramila Jayapal About Budget Battle: "You're Willing To Take Nothing?" | Video | RealClearPolitics

CNN's Keilar Grills Progressive Caucus Chair Pramila Jayapal About Budget Battle: "You're Willing To Take Nothing?"


CNN's Brianna Keilar asked Progressive Caucus Chair Rep. Primala Jayapal several times if she will lead an effort to block the bipartisan infrastructure bill unless it is paired with a larger spending package as the end-of-the-month deadline approaches.

"You're saying you're willing to take nothing, because it may come to that," Keilar asked.

"No, they would be willing to take nothing," Jayapal said about "moderate" Democrats who want to pass only the bipartisan bill.

REP. PRAMILA JAYAPAL (D-WA): Brianna, thanks so much having me on. I actually think about it as we're seeing the tremendous unity around the president's agenda. That's what the progressive caucus is about, is making sure that we deliver the entirety of the president's agenda to his desk for his signature, so that we can make sure that women are able to get back in the workforce, so that we can make sure we can have healthcare and housing.

Those are the things -- fighting climate change -- that are in the reconciliation bill. They're the things that the president came and outlined to us in his bill build back better agenda when he spoke to Congress.

So this is the Democratic agenda. And anyone that doesn't want to vote for the build back better plan is, frankly, halting the promises that we made to voters when they elected us. For the progressive caucus, the most important thing is we deliver the whole thing.

And so when the deal was made coming out of the Senate that the bipartisan infrastructure bill would pass, the deal was also made that the reconciliation bill would pass at the same time. We are just holding to that promise and saying that we will not be able to vote for the bipartisan bill until we have got the reconciliation bill passed.

And I think you heard the speaker say, we're all working very hard to get the reconciliation bill done, we hope that can happen. But obviously we need the Senate to do its part as well, because this is going to be one preconference bill as they say. So we're not going to do separate bills in the House and the Senate. We need everyone to agree.
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