WORLD US House speaker says Democrats close to reach deal on Biden's social spending plan


US House speaker says Democrats close to reach deal on Biden's social spending plan


06:55, October 25, 2021

U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said on Sunday that Democrats are close to reach a deal on President Joe Biden's social spending plan.

President Joe Biden participates in a CNN town hall at the Baltimore Center Stage Pearlstone Theater, Thursday, Oct. 21, 2021, in Baltimore. (Photo: AP)

"In terms of where we are, I have said already we have 90 percent of the bill agreed to and written. We just have some of the last decisions to be made," Pelosi said on CNN's "State of the Union."

When asked if Democrats will have a deal by the time Biden leaves for Europe at the end of the week, Pelosi said that "I think we're pretty much there now."

"It's just the language of it," she said.

Biden has been pushing Democrats to reach an agreement on his social spending plan ahead of a self-imposed deadline of Oct. 31.

"It's all about compromise. You know, 'compromise' has become a dirty word, but... bipartisanship and compromise still has to be possible," Biden said Thursday night during a CNN town hall.

"If we can't eventually unite this country, we're in deep trouble," he said.

Democrats have agreed to cut the price tag of the social spending plan from the original 3.5 trillion U.S. dollars to about 2 trillion dollars in order to win support from key moderate Democratic senators, Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona.

"It is less than what was projected to begin with, but it is still bigger than anything we've done in terms of addressing the needs of American working families," Pelosi said, adding the point is to reach a goal.

Pelosi's remarks came as Biden is meeting with Manchin and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer on Sunday in a bid to finalize the social spending plan, according to Bloomberg News.

The White House and Manchin still differ on the terms of the top-line spending level for the bill, which creates and expands programs aimed at helping women, minorities, children and the elderly, Bloomberg reported.

Democrats have said they hope that an agreement in principle on the social spending bill will allow the House to vote this week on a separate physical infrastructure bill, as the current authorization for highway funding expires on Oct. 31.

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