tv CNN Newsroom With Alisyn Camerota and Victor Blackwell CNN November 1, 2021 11:00am-12:00pm PDT
thank you for joining me. the news continues next with allison and victor. this is cnn breaking news. >> hello, welcome to "newsroom," i'm alisyn camerota. >> and i'm victor blackwell. any moment now joe manchin acrucial player in the negotiations over president biden's agenda will hold a press conference to provide what he calls clarity on where he stands on the framework for the massive spending bill. this is a pivotal moment. this could makar break the pieces of legislation. >> here is the podium. so you know it is real. >> it is going to happen. progressives now signaling they will support both of the bipartisan infrastructure bill
and the massive social safety net bill. house democrats are pushing to hold voetes this week. manu raju is standing by on capitol hill. the president was hoping to tout this deal on his foreign trip. what do we know about what manchin is going to stay and where he stands? >> reporter: well he has not been clear about where he stands. remember this is negotiated for months to try to meet his demands but even after the earliest details of the $1.75 trillion plan late last week, he did not say where he comes down. he said there is good-faith negotiations and would not get into the details but he did indicate last week that he's supportive of that price tag. but the program by program details are important. and he has not weighed in on that. one of the issues is the expansion of medicare. that is something that he has been concerned about for months. to expand it into include dental and vision and hearing and this would just include hearing and we're hearing he's about to walk
in any moment here and will lay out his concerns. but earlier today, i asked him about all of this. he said we're going to give clarity, give clarity, he said. i ty i will clear up a lot of things sometime today. i think there needs to be clarity on where everybody stands. so the senator is about ready to come in here. he's not come in yet. but we do expect him -- he's standing right there. but once he comes in here, we'll hopefully get a better stance. >> we're watching with you. >> the suspense is killing us. >> it is futile to talk about senator sinema. let's talk about senator manchin, because last week he said things look good but that isn't a yes. i wonder, do you book the senate press room if you're not at yes. >> reporter: it would be surprising to hear him come out and say that explicitly. because he has had concerns about a number of provisions and
he's had concerns about some of the things that ultimately are in here. so to say that he wants to come out and detail what he calls clarity on his position, would suggest perhaps concerns, things that he wants changed and what we do know -- here he is now. >> let's listen in. >> let's wait, give more to -- to come in. anybody out in the hallway? first of all i want you to thank you all for coming. and i've heard a lot of the mischaracterizations of my position since the president met with the house democrats last thursday. and i would like to make an attempt to clear up any confusion about where i stand on the legislation that is working its way through congress. in all of miff years of public service and i've been around for a long time and i've never seen anything like. this the president of the united states has addressed the house democratic caucus twice recently. to urge action on the bipartisan
infrastructure bill which sometimes will be referred to as the biff bill. last week the speaker urged, speaker pelosi urged the importance of voting and passing the biff bill before the president took the world stage overseas. and still no action. in my view, this is not how the united states congress should operate, or in my has operated in the past. the political games have to stop. twice now the house has balked at the opportunity to sechd the biff legislation to the president. as you've heard, there are some house democrats who say they can't support this infrastructure package until they get my commitment on the reconciliation legislation. it is time to vote on the biff bill, up or down. and then go home and explain to your constituents the decision you made. and i've always said, if i can't go home and explain it, i can't vote for it and if i can i will. and i've worked in good faith for three months for the past three months, with president
biden, leader schumer, speaker pelosi and my colleagues on the reconciliation bill and i will continue to do so. for the sake of the country, our house to vote and pass the bipartisan infrastructure bill. holding this bill hostage is not going to work. in getting my support for the reconciliation bill. throughout the last three months i've been straightforward about my concerns that i will not support a reconciliation package that expands social programs and irresponsibly adds to our $29 trillion in national debt that no one seems to really care about or even talk about. nor will i support a package that risks hurting american families suffering from historic inflation. simply put, i would not support a bill that is this consequential without thoroughly understanding the impact it will have on our national debt, our economy and most importantly all of our american people. every elected representative needs to know what they are voting for and the impact it has.
not only on their constituents, but to the entire country. that is why we must allow time for a complete transparency and analysis on the impact of changes to our tax code and energy and climate policies to ensure that our country is well positioned to remain the superpower of the world. while we inspire the rest of the world towards a cleaner environment and this all can be done. i for one won't support a multi-trillion dollars bill without greater clarity, about why congress chooses to ignore this serious effects of inflation. and debt that have on our economy and existing government programs. for example, how could i in good conscious vote for a bill that proposed massive expansion to programs which program like social security and medicare face insolvency and benefits could be reduced as soon as 206 and medicare in 2033 in social security. how does that make sense? i don't think it does.
meanwhile elected leaders continue to ignore exploding inflation that our national debt continues to grow and interest payments on debt will start to rapidly increase when the fed has to start raising interest rates to slow down this runaway inflation. with the factors in mind, and all of these factors that we spoken about, i've worked in good faith for months with all miff colleagues to find a middle ground on a fiscally and i repeat that, a fiscally responsible piece of legislation that fixes the flaws of the 2017 trump tax bill. that i thought was weighted far, far too far for the high enderners. and the needs of american families and children. however, as more of the real details outline the basic framework are released what i see are shell games, budget gimmicks that make the real cost of the so-called $1.75 trillion bill estimated to be almost twice that amount.
if the full time is run out. if you extended it permanently and that we haven't even spoken about. this is a recipe for economic crisis. none of us should ever misrepresent to the american people what the real cost of legislation is. while i've worked hard to fainda path to compromise, it is obvious compromise is not good enough for my colleagues in congress. it is all or nothing. and their position doesn't seem to change unless we agree to everything. enough is enough. it's time our elected leaders in washington, all of us, stop playing games with the needs of the american people and holding a critical infrastructure bill hostage. while there is opportunity in the reconciliation bill that we could all agree on. and we've been talking about this for months. again, to be clear, i will not support the reconciliation legislation without knowing how the bill will impact our debt and our economy and our country and we won't know that until we work through the text. for the sake of our country, i,
again, and i'm urging all of my colleagues in the house to vote and pass the bipartisan infrastructure bill. it is bipartisan. 69 votes, we worked on that for many, many months. as i've said before, holding that bill hostage is not going to work to get my support of what you want. it is what we should all agree on and work through the process. i'm open to supporting a final bill that helps move our country forward. but i'm equally open to voting against a bill that hurts our country and i've been very clear about that also. and most importantly, it hurts every american. let's work together and i mean that. let's all work together on getting a sensible reconciliation package, a package that strengthens our nation and makes us better and leads the world. thank you all. let me just say -- let me just say. let me say one thing. i'm not going to negotiate in public on this because i've been
dealing in good faith and i will continue to deal in good faith with all of my colleagues on both sides. it is time to pass the bill and quit playing games. >> all right, that is senator manchin, one of the crucial votes for the president's agenda. let's bring in wolf blitzer. chief political analyst gloria borger and john harwood. wolf, what we just, how do you reconcile that from senator manchin with the narrative of they're just inches away, he still has plenty of questions and wants those answers before he gives support. >> they're not inched away, they're a long, long way away from a deal on the bigger package. he said vote on the bipartisan infrastructure package, get that out of the way, but as you know there is a lot of progressive democrats in the house of representatives who say they're not going to vote for that bipartisan infrastructure
package unless at the same time they can vote ahead on the so-called reconciliation package, the $1.75 trillion package that deals with all sorts of social issues and climate change and other important issues and what manchin just said, there is no deal. and unless the progressive democrats decide to change their position, there is not going to be the bipartisan infrastructure package, pramila jayapal has made it clear of the 90 or so members of the progressive caucus, half will vote against it and unless there are a lot of republican members of the house of representatives who are willing to vote for the bipartisan infrastructure package, it is unlikely to go ahead. it is unlikely to be passed. and the speaker, nancy pelosi, has said she's not going to bring any bill up for a vote unless she's guaranteed that the bill she wants will pass.
that bipartisan infrastructure package even though it got 169 votes in the senate and including 19 republican senators an the senate minority leader mitch mcconnell, that is unlikely to pass from the progressives hold firmly against it. so this is a major, major setback for the white house and major setback in this effort to get the legislation passed. both pieces of legislation. and it is interesting, victor, that it is coming as the president of the united states is here in scotland where i am and he's trying to deal with the international community, the world leadership on this critically important issue of climb change and this is clearly a setback for president biden right now to hear that senator manchin said no deal. >> this is not the news that he was hoping to have on his trip there. manu, you've just been scrambled back into position for us. you've been following this minute-by-minute, all of these developments. we've relied on you for the past however many weeks. was this a surprise what manchin came out and just did?
>> reporter: in short, no. because he's been raising concerns. we've been reporting about the growth in the social programs and concern after they released his $1.75 trillion framework. one of the concerns i'm told is the growth of medicare, that would include hearing under the proposal, hearing coverage. that is a no good for manchin and he's raised concerns about a number of other issues in the bill, other expansion, the amount of money. but the litany of concerns is a real issue for the white house and democratic leaders to sort out. because he wants time. he wants to be able to look through this and vet this massive proposal, understand the impact that this would have on the economy, get a full accounting of how much this will cost. he does not even believe this will cost ome $1.75 trillion. just saying moments ago, budget gimmicks mean this is a whole lot worse. he has seriously concerned about what this could mean for inflation. he's been raising concerns for months and very importantly
saying here that no matter what the progressives in the house do, it is not going to effect how he views this separate bill. he's saying if you hold up that infrastructure bill, in the house to try to get me to support this larger bill, that is not going to effect me on getting behind the larger bill. all of which raises some serious questions about how this ultimately will turn out and increasing the likelihood this is going to take a lot more time and require a lot more changes to win over joe manchin and a significant uncertainty about whether there ever able to get there and whether the progressives now in turn will say no deal with you, that means we're going to sink the infrastructure bill thatta greed on. >> wow, the phrase shell games and budget gimmicks, we heard there from the senator. g gloria, let me come to you next. because we heard there was hope that there could be votes sometime this week. i mean, does the senators news conference here just take that clean off the table? >> well, sort of does.
i would wonder whether there could be any way of convincing progressives that you ought to vote on the infrastructure package and get it done f. i were terry mcauliffe out there in virginia, would you be upset about this. because if he had the infrastructure package, he would probably argue his life would have been a lot easier these last few weeks. but i want to pick up on what you were saying earlier about the language that joe manchin is using here. shell games. recipe for economic crisis. none of us should misrepresent what the real cost of a bill is. i mean, when you look at what he's saying, he's saying you guys are trying to pull a fast one over on me. you want to put back in all of the spending for medicare, you think i'm going to buy that. you think i don't see these shell games. i'm not going along with that and i could sense his frustration and anger. now they'll be the same frustration and anger orn the other side, probably cross the ocean there will be some
frustration and anger as well from the folks in the administration. but, the lack of trust and we've been talking about this an awful lot over the last weeks, continues and it seems to me that it is about to explode here because manchin is effectively walking away from reconciliation from this big package for right now and into the foreseeable future. >> john harwood, some of the things that senator manchin brought up there, he's sort of frameds a mysteries. i'm not going anything until we could figure out what the impact on this is going to be and we know the economic consequences on inflation. what is going to tell him that. how long will it take to know those things? >> well, one of the things that they'll wait for is a score from the congressional budget office about what the true cost of the bill actually is. that is often influential. i think it is not clear and not clear in the white house exactly what joe manchin was doing because consider a couple of things.
first of all, the white house was -- and democratic leaders in the house were comfortable enough over the weekend with silence, public silence from sinema and manchin that they were going to move ahead with both the infrastructure bill and the reconciliation bill. and they thought they would pass both of those bills. if they pass the infrastructure bill, that takes that concern that joe manchin was venting off, off the table. secondly, getting the process started in the house kicks off a much slower process nt senate. the white house was looking at a time table that would end around thanksgiving with passage of the reconciliation bill. that presumably would be plenty of time for joe manchin's questions to be answered. so if you saw what manchin is doing, is venting about pressure that he was getting from progressives an being anied that they hadn't passed the infrastructure bill, that could still be consistent with the scenario where he is going to support the package that -- the framework that was allowed.
in addition to that, he was pushing back on some of the things that people are at the last minute trying to negotiate into the framework. remember they announced a framework late last week. and then over the weekend there was a big push to try to get prescription drug provisions inserted become in the bill. so, the tone was bad for sure and it -- if what joe manchin meant to do was say you can't pressure me and vent about the bipartisan infrastructure bill, what he, in fact, is doing, may be undercutting the confidence that the progressives needed to move ahead with both bill this is week which might have taken care of his issue with the infrastructure bill. >> i want to talk about timing. because your traveling with the president in scotland. just a few hours ago president biden reaffirmed america's commitment to fighting the climate crisis. he wanted to good through with the passage of this massive climate spending. he did not get that.
and while he is at the conference, you get this from senator manchin showing just how far apart they are still in passing that climate legislation. you're view of the significance of this moment, while the president is there for senator manchin to just reaffirm just how far the president is from getting that legislation potentially. >> yeah, it is very awkward indeed, victor, for the president of the united states. remember, yesterday, before he left rome, and the g20 summit, he had a news conference in which he was very up beat at predicting passage of both pieces of this legislation. the infrastructure bill and the reconciliation bill, he was pretty optimistic and he sort of went after the journalists saying you guys have been saying it is not going to happen. not going to happen. well it is going to happen. and he was suggesting it could happen this week and earlier the white house had suggested that the votes for both could come up as early as tuesday. well clearly that is not going to happen.
and to our viewers, we have to remember manchin is a powerful, powerful senator, indeed every senator is pretty powerful right now because there are 50 democrats in the senate and 50 republicans in the senate. if manchin votes against the reconciliation package, all of the republicans will vote against it. the vote would be 51-49. if senator sinema votes against it, it is would be 52-49, they would lose that piece of legislation in the senate. so it is critically important right now that he knows that and he's trying to use his influence to get the bipartisan infrastructure package passed, but i don't know if the progressives will go along with it. i assume the white house would be pleased if at least they could get the infrastructure package passed, the one that passed the senate with 69 votes. they would be pleased if that infrastructure package would be historic. it is been about 30 years since a massive infrastructure package passed the u.s. senate, the u.s. house of representatives and was signed into law by a president of the united states.
so they would be pleased to get that and as gloria said, terry mcauliffe in virginia would have been thrilled if that piece of legislation would have been passed a few weeks ago. it would have helped him dramatically going into the election there tomorrow. so, this is all very, very complex. but right now i'm sure there is deep, deep disappointment among white house officials that manchin has come out and said what he said. >> yeah, we have congressman pramila jayapal to talk about how she feels about what manchin just said. does this suggest that president biden misread manchin. he's had so many meetings with manchin and sinema and it sounds like he thought everybody was on the same page. >> at this point, it is kind of hard to know. i think what i'm hearing from manchin and, manu could speak to this better than anyone, is that he thought there was a framework and then he saw democrats trying to add stuff back in like there was some talk of the adding in more medicare stuff that bernie
sanders wants or maybe some way to work around a smaller family and medical leave package or whatever. and i think you -- in his statements he's like you're not going to -- you can't do that to me because i don't think it is good for the country, i don't think we can pay for it and that is not what i signed on to. so, i'm wondering what the so-called framework that he thought perhaps that he agreed with is now something that he believes is become kind of a moving target and shouldn't have been. so i think that we have to sort of figure that out. >> all right. we of course will follow the fast-moving developments here as alisyn said, we have the head of the progressive caucus, jayapal coming up. thank you all. as we've been mentioning, it is election eve in america with candidates making the final pitches to voters nationwide.
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tomorrow is election day and voters in new york city will pick a new mayor. and voters in new jersey will cast a ballot for governor and in minneapolis the future of policing is on the ballot. >> and in virginia, a state that biden would be by 10 points, gubernatorial candidates democrat terry mcauliffe and glenn kungkin are neck-and-neck. what is the closing message, dan? >> reporter: it is been
interesting, that he both closed the campaigns wait that they opened them. you have youngkin focused on education and taxes an crime and mcauliffe is trying to tie youngkin to trump. because of the fact that trump lost this state by ten pointsa know. there has been head winds, p manchins's news impacted this, they've not done that and that certainly has been a frustration for democrats here in virginia. even still mcauliffe has continued to nationalize this race and talked up his ties to the biden administration and he's compared youngkin to trump at almost every turn. take a listen to what he said yesterday tieing youngkin to the former president. >> trump wants to win here so he could announce for president for 2024. that is the stakes this election. he's trying to get himself off the mat. he wants to win here tuesday and wednesday, donald trump announces he's running in 2024.
are we going to allow that to go on? >> reporter: obviously mcauliffe hopes that a message that resonated for democrats that rejected trump in 2020. donald trump is not planning to announce a 2024 run on wednesday but what is interesting is that young kirn who has avoided tieing himself to trump and kept him at arm's length, he has become to national the race, acknowledging that this could have factors across the nation. take a look at what he said here today in richmond. >> the entire nation is watching this. and why? why? there are only two state wide elections this year. new jersey and virginia and all eyes are on virginia. the nation needs us to vote for them too. it needs us to vote for them too. >> reporter: it is been over a decade since a republican has won statewide here in the commonwealth of virginia. you've seen as polls have
tightened, youngkin and suitors have gotten excited they're in this race and i that i why he nationalized the contest trying to make this more about just the commonwealth of virginia. mcauliffe will be stumping here in richmond and have another meeting in virginia and both of them tomorrow will spend most of the day in northern virginia as they watch votes come in. >> thank you, dan. jessica taylor is an editor for the coke report and john harwood is back with us. j john, let's start with you and the tele-rally happening tonight, that former president trump will call into. glenn youngkin will not be part of it. we know that mcauliffe has been tieing youngkin to trump or trying to do that over the last couple of weeks. the decision not to be a part of that, how much does that tell us about the fine line that youngkin is trying to walk and what does that mean in the final hours of this race? >> well, it tells us a lot.
glenn youngkin is trying to be a minimally trumpy republican. he doesn't want the galvanizing effect that donald trump has on democratic voters because what republicans have in this race is a much more enthused and energized base. democrats are down and joe biden is down, his approval is well under 50%, trugling with all kinds of issues and we have this consistent pattern that has gone on for four decades. ten out of the last 11 gubernatorial elections have been won by the party that is not occupying the white house. so it is -- it would be natural for the republican to win the race, it is true that virginia's gotten more democratic over the years. nevertheless, that is a very consistent and stable pattern. glenn youngkin is capitalizing and trying to do it by both rallying the typical more rural conservative base in virginia, traditional conservatives, and those moderate suburban voters
and a key to get the voters is not closely identifying him with donald trump and glenn youngkin has done that fairly successfully so far. >> jessica, is it possible the democrats are misreading the issues on the top of virginia voters' minds because when you look at the the plan, the trump or the build back better plan is the top of the list. this is from "the washington post," education is number one on this list. and i mean, that is what glenn youngkin has leaned into so much about the school board, the angry school board meetings and everything. and then the economy. and you could define that however you want. then coronavirus, with all of the mandates and vaccines and everything. then abortion, crime, taxes an then something else gets a big number at 16%. is seems like glenn youngkin has embraced this immigration thing in a way i'm not sure that terry mcauliffe has. >> that big push started after
the last debate when terry mcauliffe about a law that he vetoed that would have allowed parents to -- to opt out of certain text for students. and he said, i don't think that parents should be telling schools what they teach. and i think that was a pivotal moment. you've seen the youngkin campaign go on air immediately with that. it is flooding the airwaves and you have these, i think upset parents, it is sort of a perfect storm after covid and wanting them to go back, wanting them to be safe and not wanting masks. you have really, it is a passional issue, education is and it is one that typically democrats have a clear advantage on. but right now the polling shows that it is tied and i think mcauliffe thought that covid was more of an issue. they pressed home how they support vaccine mandates and mask mandates and that is a popular position in virginia. i think they thought that would motivate democratic voters in
the same way that helped gavin newsom in the final weeks of california. but california is not virginia. this is a state that is trended blue. but ultimately it is youngkin that i think has seized on what is most i think politically salient issue of the time and hammered that home and mcauliffe for a long time, he i think i've heard from democrats they waited too long to respond after that debate moment and i think that could end up being maybe the most pivotal moment of the campaign. >> john, after hearing what he just heard from joe manchin on how far democrats, the factions are apart from passing this legislation, terry mcauliffe has blamed i lot of the frustration within the democratic party in virginia on that in-fighting. considering the polling we just saw, is there any indication that that is why potentially the race narrowed or is that just blame shifting? >> i suspect it is more blame shifting than anything else. yes, washington looks to be a mess right now and that is
contributed to joe biden's problems. but i think larger issues are at play in that. first of all, the nation has been set back on the coronavirus and that is one of the things that hurt joe biden. and you have concerns about economy and inflation and the supply chain issues which are weighing on the virginia voters and everywhere else. whether or not terry mcauliffe has anything to do with them. so the broad environment is bad for democrats right now. an one of the advantages of that education issue you were just discussing with jessica, is that it serves to allow glenn youngkin to appeal both to conservatives and moderates. the issue about banning particular books that upset students, that is something that conservatives who like culture wars appeal to. but he's talking about increasing funding for education and that is something that modern suburbanites that have trended democratic over the last several elections, that they -- appeals to them too. so it is a convenient two-for
for glenn youngkin to talk about education and that is one big asset for him. >> john harwood, jessica taylor, thank you. and tomorrow is election night in america. the stakes as we have set them are high in the race for governor in virginia and new jersey. and of course we're watching that race for mayor of new york. our coverage starts at 6:00 p.m. here on cnn. >> the cdc is set to discuss whether to give parents the green light to vaccinate children against covid. we have all of the latest next. as someone who resembles someone else, i appreciate that liberty mutual knows everyone's unique. that's why they customize your car insurance, so you only pay for what you need. oh, yeah. that's the spot. only pay for what you need. ♪ liberty, liberty, liberty, liberty ♪ advanced non-small cell lung cancer can change everything.
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tomorrow the cdc will vote on whether to recommend the pfizer vaccine for kids ages 5 to 11. if the cdc director signs off, shots could begin on wednesday. >> meantime, moderna's plans for a child vaccine have been delayed over cdc concerns about heart safety. and there is this grim new milestone in the pandemic. more than 5 million people around the world have died from covid-19. cnn's alexander field has more. >> since we announced the mandate just days ago, 22,472 new vaccinations among our city employees. >> reporter: more proof the mandates are working, 91% of new york city's municipal work force is now vaccinated.
police and ems and sanitation workers and the fire department seeing big gains since the mayor announced the mandate 12 days ago. >> anyone who hasn't so far, there is still a chance to fix it. come in and get vbd. come back to work because we need everyone to do their job and we need everybody to be safe. >> reporter: still, 9,000 city workers who didn't get the shot are now at home on unpaid leave. the mayor said there have been no interruptions to police, sanitation and fire services, and no firehouses closed. but the firefighters union is still pushing back against the city's mandate. >> we're hoping fire coverage is not impinged upon but it is hard to say at this time. >> reporter: the battle is playing out against the back drop of a big milestone, the white house said 80% of adults in the u.s. have received their first shot. nearly 70% of adults are now fully vaccinated. new covid cases continue to fall and hospitalizations are under
50,000 for the first time in three months. tomorrow cdc advisers are set to discuss whether to recommend pfizer's vaccine for kids as young as 5. mean wlooil, moderna gets a yellow light. the drugmakers seeking an fda emergency use authorization to give its vaccine to children and teens between 12 and 17 said that the fda wants more time to review the risk of heart inflammation. >> this is really showing us that safety signals and our observations are really working. this is what happens when we pay very close attention to vaccines and how they are being add stinstered. >> reporter: in another big push to show how safe vaccines are, the science community comes tout to debunk the myth that covid could cause infertility. putting out a statement saying unfounded claims linking covid-19 vaccines to infertility has been scientifically disproven and adding similarly
there is no evidence that the covid-19 vaccine effects puberty. white house press secretary jen psaki has revealed she tested positive for covid. she's not traveling with the president. she was last with president biden last tuesday at the time she was outside and wearing a mask, physician as agree there is a very low likelihood that she could have transmitted the virus. the president is triple protected and did test negative just yesterday. >> thank you. breaking news on capitol hill. senator manchin just said that he will not support the president's spending bill. says he has a long way to go there. we'll talk to the chair of the progressive caucus, pramila jayapal next. ♪
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le's go back to capitol hill where moments ago joe manchin dealt a major set back to the president's massive social spending bill. senator mafrnlin said before he can get what he calls greater clarity on how it impacts the economy and the nation's debt. he's urging house democrats to first pass the infrastructure bill before he'll consider supporting the larger social spending bill. >> holding this bill hostage is not going to work. and getting my support for reconciliation bill. throughout the last three months, i have been straightforward about my concerns that i will not support a reconciliation package that
expands social programs and irrespons irresponsibly adds to our $29 trillion in national debt that no one seems to care about. >> the announcement came a day after progressive democrats signalled they were likely to back the bipartisan infrastructure bill and the social safety net bill when they come up for a vote. joining me now is pramila jayapal from washington state. she is of course the leader of the progressive caucus. congresswoman, thank you for being with me. first, you know, we heard at the end of last week, you said that you could see the end. we heard from your colleagues that you're within inches. after what we heard from senator manchin today, where are you? >> well, victor, it's good to see you, and i think where we are is working very hard to get both the bills through the house, and feeling very good about that. now, we have the text. we spent the weekend reviewing the text. we had a big meeting of the progressive caucus yesterday, and i think that we are ready,
pending some final negotiations on things we care very much about. immigration and prescription drug pricing. we know senators are still negotiating that. some details on child care. those are the last pieces, and once we have those, we will be happy to vote both of those bills, both the infrastructure bill, and the build back better bill through the house, and i'm hoping that can happen as soon as tomorrow or the next day. we are ready to get this transformational change to people. >> congresswoman, you say you're ready and there may just be a few final pieces from you. what we heard from senator manchin sounds like he's far from the pieces. some of the spending, let's be cheer, the shell game is a scam, where he says how can i vote for this without knowing how much it costs. so senator manchin doesn't appear to be that close.
are you having any conversations with him to help get him closer to a deal? >> victor, i'm letting the president have those conversations. the president came to the caucus, and assured us that he would get 51 votes in the senate for this deal that he has been negotiating with senator manchin and senator sinema. we had a deal several months ago. those two senators weren't there yet. we understand we have to get 50 votes. we continue to compromise but make sure we have a truly transformational bill. the president thinks he can get 51 votes for the bill. we're going to trust him, do our work in the house, and let the senate do its work. we're tired of just being -- continue to go wait for one or two people. we trust the president that he will get 51 votes for this, and we will pass both bills through the house as soon as we have these final negotiations wrapped
up. >> i want just your reaction to those words from the senator where he calls them shell games, and budget gimmicks. to that you say what? >> i don't think it's necessary for me to comment on it because it's so far outside the scope of what has been happening, and, you know, i would just urge everybody to keep tempers down. it sometimes this happens in final negotiations, and i, again, am going to make sure that we deliver what we said we would, which is progressives will vote for the infrastructure bill and the build back better act, and we will trust the president that he is going to get 51 votes for this bill that we have negotiated in good faith with all the senators on. and that's what i -- that's what i'm focused on. >> senator manchin also says holding, as he says, the bipartisan infrastructure bill hostage will not urge him, convince him to vote for the
larger spending bill. is there potentially any change in strategy where you would vote for that bill or the members of your caucus would vote for that bill, before a senate on the larger social safety net bill. >> we never called for a senate -- we had called for a senate vote some time ago. we backed off that position in deference to the president and with trust to the two senators and the rest of the senate. we now have said that we will vote for both bills in the house together. and that's what we're going to do. that's what we are ready to do, and so i hope that the senators who have been negotiating in good faith with the president of the united states as the president is in glasgow talking about how important it is that we make significant investments in climate change and do many of the things that we're talking about doing. i hope that every senator, including those that want to speak about where we are in negotiations understands that we are getting ready to pass through the house of
representatives a bill with $550 billion in investing and taking on climate change, bringing down carbon emissions significantly so we can get to the reductions, goalso of emissions that the president is talking about. pass both bills in the house, and rely on the president to get the 51 votes he committed to when he came to speak to us, and i trust the president. >> do you have any indication that senator manchin supports that 550 billion for climate? >> i just can't speak for him. i'm sorry, victor, i know you want me to. i can't speak for him. i don't know. >> have you had conversations with him about that. >> i have had conversations, again, my understanding is he has been negotiating with the white house this entire time. he has generated, you know, in a place where we have 96% of democrats in the house, senate, and white house agreeing on a
$3.5 trillion package the senator has got an lot of c concessions because we need 50 votes in the senate. i've got to trust that the president had all the information in front of him when he said he could get 51 votes in the senate for this package that we're voting on. >> all right. we just got a statement from the president through press secretary jen psaki where he says he's confident that he will get the support from joe manchin so we'll see how that continues to work out as congresswoman jayapal says they are still negotiating there. let me ask you, your view on the decision to do this today. you mentioned the $555 billion that's in this package. the president is at cop26 in scotland where he's trying to convince the rest of the world that the u.s. is leading here when back here at home, senator man chin decides on this day to say we're far from a deal on this massive, historic even, investment in fighting the
climate crisis. >> i don't understand it. i can't speak for it. i will just say sometimes tempers get a little flared toward the end of negotiations. i hope that's all this is because we plan to vote these two bills through, and we plan to rely on the president to get the 51 votes in the senate for what we vote through. >> let's talk about prescription drug pricing and the effort to lower that. was it in the initial framework that you enthusiastically endorsed last weekment we know that there have been conversations between speaker pelosi and senator kyrsten sinema about that. is that getting closer to potentially being added back on to or part of this larger bill. >> well, we're very encouraged by the fact that we heard that there are good conversations going on, and we very much, you know, said at the time we endorse the framework, but we also enthusiastically supported any additive elements, whether it was prescription drug pricing or at the time, paid leave.
i know senator gillibrand was working on that: i had several senators text me over the weekend. well will enthusiastically push for anything you can get 50 votes in the senate for. i know senator sanders is pushing hard on the prescription drug piece. and our front liners in the most vulnerable districts in the house and across the country understand that this is such an important piece of what we need to get done, and i really hope, even if we can't do everything, let's make a start on really doing some meaningful changes. it's got to be meaningful. it's it's not meaningful, it's not worth it. if there are meaningful things we can get done together just to get a start on lowering prescription drug prigcing, that's what 90% of americans want us to do, and we have to give them real relief on the costs of prescription drugs. >> over the weekend and heading into what we heard from senator
manchin, the president gave the suggestion that democrats were going to get it done, that you were close, much like you did at the end of the week. we've got this statement from the president which he says he's confident he will get joe manchin. has the president read how far apart the two parts are here, considering that just a couple of days ago, we were hearing from the president that you all were within a few inches of finishing this? >> i don't think the president has misread this. i think he and the white house team have been in very close touch with both senators and i think that the president came to us and he said this to me a couple of weeks ago that when he came to me, it would be with the confidence that he could achieve this. he wouldn't say that unless he knew he could get it done. they spent several weeks negotiating this with the two senators and with all of us and i think now we have the text as we have called for. we are, you know, we have
reviewed everything. we feel very very good about what's in this package. it really is transformative. the build back better act, and the infrastructure bill, together a significant investment into roads and bridges, but also universal child care, pre-k, home and community-based care, health care, climate change, housing, extensive investments into housing. and so we feel very very good about where we are, and we're not giving up on anything else. we are also going to get immigration in this bill, something on immigration in this bill. very very important to us as a progressive caucus, and we will fight for that, and we will get those done, and i believe that the president is speaking out of the experience that he has had of negotiating and the conversations he's had with these senators. so i trust the president, he's going to deliver 51 votes, and i think we need to bring the temperature down a little bit.