Last-minute partisan disputes threaten infrastructure accord
A long-sought bipartisan infrastructure deal lawmakers hoped to secure Monday could collapse because of a sudden dispute over the terms of the package that has left Republicans and the White House blaming each other.
A group of Senate Republicans had hoped to announce a finalized agreement on Monday on a measure that would spend $1.2 trillion on roads, bridges, water projects, and broadband expansion.
But Republicans now say the White House and Democrats are pushing for late changes to the measure that could sink the deal. Democrats say it’s the other way around — Republicans are reneging on spending for replacing lead pipes.
An aide to Sen. Mitt Romney, a Utah Republican, lashed out at Democrats for anonymously claiming to media outlets that Republicans rejected an agreed-upon $15 billion to remove lead water pipes. The money, Democrats said, would be in addition to the $55 billion the two parties agreed to spend on water infrastructure.