Lawmakers worked late into the night on Friday, scrambling to pass Joe Biden's $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill. The White House announced Wednesday that President Joe Biden will sign the measure on Monday during a special ceremony, where he will be joined by members of Congress, governors, mayors, and labor union and business leaders.
Gary Bauer, chairman of the Campaign for Working Families, says after last week's shellacking at the polls, Democrats desperately needed a win – and that thanks to those 13 Republicans in the House, they got it.
"It was extremely disappointing to see [passage of] the first infrastructure bill that's supposed to be the more moderate real infrastructure bill," he tells AFN. "In fact, it cost $1.2 trillion … and only about a $100 billion of it has anything to do with roads and bridges.
"This is another one of these 'Green New Deal' alternative energy bills that has virtually nothing to do with making life easier or cheaper for average Americans," he adds.
With the help of that group of Republican lawmakers, the House voted 228-206 to pass the legislation. "The Squad," a group of high-profile Democratic progressives, however, were the only six Democrats to vote against it. The Senate had previously passed the bill 69-30.
In light of the House vote, Bauer argues that conservative voters need to make a statement next year.
"I have no doubt that there will be a lot of House seats currently held by Democrats that, if we stay on the road that we're on now, will be very much in play for conservative Republican candidates," he predicts. "I do think it's possible to pick up seats in Pennsylvania, in Michigan, and in Ohio as well as other states. So, we'll see how it plays out."
At least two of the 13 Republicans who voted with the Democratic leadership in the House have already announced they do not plan to seek re-election: Adam Kinzinger (R-Illinois) and Anthony Gonzalez (R-Ohio). Both Kinzinger and Gonzalez were among the ten House Republicans who voted in January to impeach former President Donald Trump.