It’s a Friday in August, do you know where your senators are? They aren’t here. But they aren’t on Summer recess either.
SINEMA SIGNS ON — Arizona centrist Democrat Sen. Kyrsten Sinema is backing the Democrats climate, tax and health care bill, after an agreement on changes to the package was announced by her and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) last night.
Changes to the bill that won Sinema’s approval include:
- Adding a 1 percent excise tax on stock buybacks, that is expected to bring in far greater revenues than…
- Language narrowing the tax break on carried interest is out of the bill
- Paring back parts of a 15 percent minimum tax of large, profitable corporations
- Add $5 billion in drought resiliency investments
The changes are expected to increase the bill’s original $300 billion deficit reduction figure.
“Subject to the Parliamentarian’s review, I’ll move forward,” Sinema said in a statement Thursday night.
Known unknowns… The deal with Sinema takes one major question mark for Democrats off the table (barring any sinematic surprises.) But how the Parliamentarian will rule on a long roster of provisions in the package still leaves Democrats in a waiting game.
A decision from the chamber’s rules arbiter on the prescription drug portions could come as soon as today, with tax provisions expected after that. Today, staff will present arguments on taxation, including the electric vehicle tax credits, behind closed doors.
Timing is everything… The Senate isn’t in session today, but is expected to reconvene midday on Saturday, with votes kicking off at 12:30 p.m. on a motion to discharge a nomination. Later Saturday, a vote on the motion to proceed to the climate, tax and health care bill is expected.
There are long days and late nights on the horizon with scores of amendments expected in the marathon vote-a-rama that is expected to stretch through the weekend.
The vote-a-rama is “going to start later than we imagine, it’s going to run longer than we would hope and it’s going to be more painful getting out of here than any of us have any reason to expect,” said Sen. Chris Coons (D-Del.). That’s the spirit.
Marianne and Burgess have the latest updates from last night: Sinema signs onto Dems’ party-line bill ahead of momentous Saturday vote
RELATED:Democrats Agree on Revised Tax Bill With Stock Buyback Levy, from Erik Wasson and Laura Davison at Bloomberg; Sen. Kyrsten Sinema Wins Tax Changes to Democrats’ Climate Bill, from Andrew Duehren at The Wall Street Journal
GOOD MORNING! Welcome to Huddle, the play-by-play guide to all things Capitol Hill, on this Friday, August 5, where today is the day to get your vote-a-rama snacks.
MOST CLICKED Stay weird, Huddle readers. Huddle’s most clicked is back, with a Friday spotlight on the most clicked of the week: A staffer no longer works for Chuy García after the congressman’s official account tweeted and deleted a slur over the weekend
SPEAKER, SANCTIONED — The Chinese Foreign Ministry has announced unspecified sanctions against Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and her family following her trip to Taiwan this week. China says it is suspending or canceling dialogue with the U.S. on a range of issues, from military relations and anti-drug efforts to climate change in retaliation for Pelosi’s Taiwan trip, The Associated Press reported this morning. China has also sent military ships and war planes across the centerline of the Taiwan Strait, crossing what has been an unofficial buffer zone between China and Taiwan.
WARNOCK WEEKEND LONG-READ — A deep dive on Sen. Raphael Warnock (D-Ga.) as he transitions from a candidate who ran as an activist preacher to an incumbent who needs to prove that despite the split Senate, he’s delivering for Georgia…“In strictly political terms, this tension and connection might be expressed as purity versus pragmatism. And for Warnock, ever the reverend, the balancing act between the high and the low, the eternal and the utterly quotidian, sometimes means taking a run-of-the-mill legislative compromise — one that doesn’t even allocate any actual money for the asphalt — and attempting to frame it as the apotheosis of our ongoing experiment of representative self-government,” writes Michael Kruse in POLITICO Magazine from Dalton, Ga. Read it: ‘There’s Never Been Anybody Like Him in the United States Senate’
MANCHIN’S RADIO MAN — You can follow Manchin around all day every day and still not know what’s on his mind. But when he wants to get the word out, there’s a man he usually calls. Hoppy Kercheval is a broadcaster who hosts a two-hour call-in radio show where Manchin has broken big news or explained big news to listeners back home (plus the growing audience inside the Beltway who are glued to Manchin’s every move.)
“I’ve known him for years. I think he trusts me,” Kercheval told Gabe Fleisher for his Wake Up to Politics newsletter. “His political acumen is very strong, like ‘let me talk to West Virginians. Here’s a way to do it, and here’s a convenient way to do it, and it’ll be tough but fair, but I know it will be fair.’”
ANTITRUST AHEAD— With pressure building from advocates and progressives, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) said he plans to hold a vote on a bill from Sens. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) and Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) that would rein in tech giants like Google, Apple, Meta and Amazon.
“Sen. Schumer is working with Sen. Klobuchar and other supporters to gather the needed votes and plans to bring it up for a vote,” a spokesperson in Schumer’s Washington D.C. office said in a statement provided to POLITICO on Thursday. Brendan Bordelon and Josh Sisco have more.
WAYS AND MEANS HONORS WALORSKI— Rep. Jackie Walorski’s spot on the Ways and Means dais is draped in a black shroud, the chair also adorned with a black sash and with flowers sit on the desk next to her nameplate. Ranking member Rep. Kevin Brady (R-Texas) encouraged folks to visit, during regular business hours to pay respects.
Crash details change: Police in Indiana have changed their description of the crash that killed Rep. Jackie Walorski (R-Ind.) and her two staff, saying that it was not the other vehicle which crossed the centerline, but the SUV that Walorksi was in and was driven by her staff which veered across the centerline for unknown reasons. More from The Associated Press.
Congress’ softball team is ‘working hard’ for redemption, from Chris Cioffi at CQ Roll Call
How a Dem Congressional Staffer Faked Being an FBI Agent and Became a Fugitive, from Jose Pagliery at The Daily Beast
Ethics complaint filed against Sean Patrick Maloney over allegations of staff misuse, from Sara Dorn at City and State New York
Gun Trafficking Surges Across State Lines: One Pistol’s 1,200-Mile Journey to a Boston Homicide, from Dan Frosch and Zusha Elinson at The Wall Street Journal
TODAY IN CONGRESS
The House meets at 3 p.m. in a pro forma session.
The Senate is out.
AROUND THE HILL
10 a.m. Sens. John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), John Thune (R-S.D.), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), Roger Marshall (R-Kan.) and Bill Cassidy (R-La.) hold a press conference on how Democrats’ party-line spending bill will affect American energy and working families (Senate Studio).
THURSDAY’S WINNER: Three presidents changed their vice presidential picks for reelection campaigns. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt did it twice, in 1940 and 1944, while William McKinley changed his from 1896 to 1900 and Teddy Roosevelt made a swap in 1912 (he lost that race.)
TODAY’S QUESTION: Name the first president whose inauguration fell on Super Bowl Sunday. (Hint: It was also the first time the oath was taken in the Rotunda.)
The first person to correctly guess gets a mention in the next edition of Huddle. Send your answers to [email protected]
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