White House senior adviser Cedric Richmond said Sunday that White House officials do not have a set timeline for passage of President Joe Biden’s legislative agenda after a House vote on a bipartisan infrastructure bill was delayed last week.
“We don’t have a time frame on it. This is just about delivering and making sure that we deliver both bills to the American people because it meets their needs,” Richmond told “Fox News Sunday” in an interview. Richmond was referring to both the infrastructure bill as well as a $3.5 trillion spending plan Democrats are seeking to pass.
“So we’re not using an artificial timeline, and we’re not concerned with process,” he added. “We’re concerned about delivering.”
Richmond’s remarks come after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi postponed a planned vote last Thursday on the infrastructure bill amid infighting between Democratic progressives and moderates over the president’s massive climate and social spending plan. Congressional Democrats previously had set Sept. 27 as a deadline for final passage of the infrastructure bill.
House moderates — buoyed by reluctance from Sens. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) about Biden’s spending plan — are pushing for an immediate vote in their chamber on the infrastructure bill that has already cleared the Senate.
Meanwhile, House progressives are refusing to back the infrastructure bill until they secure further assurances from their moderate colleagues on Biden’s spending plan — and a commitment that both pieces of legislation will reach the president’s desk in tandem.
In a visit to Capitol Hill on Friday, Biden sought to sell both planks of his legislative agenda to House Democrats. Although he warned progressives they would likely have to accept a significantly curtailed spending plan, he also disappointed moderates by stressing that there was no rush to hold a vote on the infrastructure bill.
“It doesn’t matter whether it’s six minutes, six days or six weeks,” Biden told reporters. “We’re going to get it done.”