Sen. Ben Cardin said Sunday he’s not convinced that the Democrats’ Build Back Better legislation is dead.
“There is unanimity in our caucus that we want to get a bill to the president, and we are working to see what that bill will contain. President Biden is directly involved in these negotiations,” the Maryland Democrat said on “Fox News Sunday.”
Cardin said he saw hope for the megabill to be resurrected in 2022 even after the statement last Sunday by Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) that he would not vote for it. Without Manchin’s vote — and with all 50 Senate Republicans lined up against it — Democrats have no way to get to 50 votes. Nevertheless, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer sent out a letter last week saying there will be a vote on the bill.
“We are prepared to move; we just need to make sure we have unanimity in our caucus and that’s what we are working on and we will start on that next week when we return,” Cardin told host Mike Emanuel.
The $1.7 trillion legislation included a wide range of policy items, including universal preschool, paid family leave, child nutrition assistance, and Medicare and Medicaid expansion. Clean energy measures were a significant part of the bill. The legislation would also make the current child tax credit permanent.