Jayapal wants parts of Build Back Better plan implemented through executive actions

Pramila Jayapal
Rep. Pramila Jayapal; American Bazaar file photo

The Congressional Progressive Caucus leader says Manchin cannot be trusted.

Frustrated by West Virginia Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin’s rejection of President Joe Biden’s signature infrastructure legislation “Build Back Better” plan, head of the Congressional Progressive Caucus Pramila Jayapal urged the White House to implement parts of the agenda through executive actions.

Manchin, a centrist Democrat from a state that Biden lost by nearly 40 percentage points, told Fox News on Sunday that he would not vote for the current version of the legislative package.

According to the Washington Post, one of the provisions that Manchin has rejected is the expansion of the child tax credit, a priority for the administration.

The senator’s statement drew sharp rebuke from White House press secretary Jen Psaki, who said that Manchin’s stand is “at odds with his discussions this week with the President, with White House staff, and with his own public utterances.”

On Monday, Indian American Jayapal went even further than Psaki.

“It is abundantly clear that we cannot trust what Sen. Manchin says,” she said. “No one should think that we are going to be satisfied with an even smaller package that leaves people behind or refuses to tackle critical issues like climate change.”

Politico reported that Manchin called Jayapal on Monday morning, and the progressive leader voiced her frustration to the senator.

“It is abundantly clear that we cannot trust what Sen. Manchin says,” said Jayapal, who reportedly also spoke to White House officials.

However, Politico reported, quoting senior House Democrats, that “executive actions simply aren’t an option if the party hopes to enact a substantial piece of Biden’s social policy and climate priorities in his first term.”

Fellow Indian American Democrat Ro Khanna, another strong supporter of the Build Back Better plan, also called for immediate action.

“We can negotiate the details if [the White House] wants to continue the framework and work hard to bridge the differences,” the California Democrat said. “I’m open to that. What I’m not open to is getting nothing.”

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