The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act was passed by the Senate of the United States in the early hours of Tuesday morning.
Members of the Senate advanced the $1.2 trillion deal to the House of Representatives in a vote that took place early Tuesday morning. According to NBC News congressional correspondent Frank Thorp, nineteen Republicans, including Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), voted in favor of the legislation, which was approved by all fifty Democratic senators.
— The Hill (@thehill) August 10, 2021
The decision, which represents a compromise on President Biden’s American Jobs Plan, brings an end to a lengthy negotiation process that has lasted several months. The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, among other things, provides $110 billion for roads and bridges, $73 billion for electrical infrastructure, $66 billion for passenger and freight rail, $65 billion for high-speed internet, and $39 billion for public transportation.
“For decades, elected officials have talked about addressing our nation’s aging infrastructure,” commented Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT), a lead negotiator for the bill, in a statement. “The bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act that passed out of the Senate today turns that talk into reality. While this bill is not perfect — as is the case with a true compromise — it provides a once-in-a-generation investment in our country’s physical infrastructure without raising taxes. That is what people and communities across the country demanded of us.”
“The passage of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act is great news for the people of New Jersey and the nation at large,” said Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ). “We have turned President Biden’s pledge to ‘Build Back Better’ from a slogan into a once-in-a-generation investment that will put millions of people to work building a more competitive, equitable, and sustainable economy for the 21st century.”
Some conservative members of Congress, on the other hand, expressed concern about the bill’s fiscal ramifications.
“I’ve insisted that an infrastructure bill be fully paid for,” noted Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY). “This bill misses that mark. The level of new spending Democrats insisted on will add more than $250 billion to the debt burden on our children and grandchildren. Washington must learn to live within its means, like every family in Wyoming does.”
“I voted against this infrastructure package, which is just a smoke-screen to distract from the $3.5 trillion tax-and-spend spree from the Democrats that’s just around the corner,” added Sen. Bill Hagerty (R-TN).