WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — Democrats rejoiced after passing the nearly $2 trillion Build Back Better Act in the House early Friday morning.
The bill now moves to the Senate after months of congressional Democrats deliberating within their own party — and following a record-setting all-night effort to block it on the floor by House Minority Leader Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA).
“House Republicans will always fight for you, fight for your family and fight for our country,” McCarthy said.
Democrats say they are confident the package will pass in the Senate.
“This bill will speak for itself to millions and millions and millions and millions of Americans whose lives will be made more secure,” said House Majority Leader Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-Md.)
White House Deputy Communications Director Kate Berner says the package makes historic investments to help middle- and low-income families.
“Families will no longer pay more than $35 for insulin products,” Berner said. “Pre-K will be free under the president’s plan… Premiums for an average family will be an average of $3,000 less a year.”
Democrats also re-introduced provisions for paid family leave and to allow Medicare to negotiate drug prices. More than $500 million will go to tackling climate change by investing in clean energy manufacturing and providing tax incentives to Americans.
These are provisions that congressional Democrats say the Senate must leave intact.
“We have some Senators in the Senate that don’t agree with the climate change provisions,” Rep. Jimmy Gomez (D-Calif.) said. “We want to make sure that that stays in as well.”
Democrats say they believe President Joe Biden has worked closely enough with key Senators to get the package through Congress before the end of the year.
No representatives from the Tri-State voted in favor of the bill. Kentucky Congressman James Comer voted no on the Build Back Better Plan saying he believes the spending will “pour gas on America’s inflation fire and lead to even higher costs for milk, gas and other essential items the American people rely on.” Indiana Congressman Larry Bucshon sent Eyewitness News a statement saying in part: “This entire sham process has made one thing clear… the American people deserve better.”
The package needs complete Democratic support to pass.