Sanders Says He Won’t Let Centrists Shrink $3.5T Bill: “I Already Negotiated”

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Source: Truthout

For a while this summer, it looked as though all was right among Democrats in Congress after an agreement was reached to support one thing: the $3.5 trillion reconciliation bill, spearheaded by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont). But, in recent weeks, conservative Democrats have slowly come out against it, in one way or another, and are slated to put up a fight against its price tag as committees begin drafting the bill.

Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Arizona) has been the most vocal in her opposition, saying last month (and reiterating recently) that she opposes the $3.5 trillion price tag, and that it’s not up for debate. Sinema has been widely criticized for her stance — a month ago, she was the first Democrat to come out against it — but she is steadfast in her opposition. Her conservative ally in the Senate, Joe Manchin (D-West Virginia), has also said that he has “serious concerns” over the price tag for the bill.

Sanders, however, is determined to keep the price tag — and he, too, says it’s not up for debate. “I already negotiated. The truth is we need more,” he told Politico in an interview Wednesday. “The needs are there. This is, in my view, the minimum of what we should be spending.”

Sharon Zhang is a news writer at Truthout.

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