The White House pumped the brakes Tuesday about the prospects of passing “historic” bipartisan legislation over the next two years despite President Joe Biden’s repeated vows to work with Republicans following November’s midterm election results.
Brian Deese, the director of Biden’s National Economic Council, addressed the subject when asked by reporters if comments made by House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), who characterized the CHIPS and Science Act, bipartisan infrastructure law, and more as “corporate welfare,” suggested Biden’s window for bipartisanship had closed.
“We certainly don’t believe that has to be the case. I think one of the things the president said that day after the election in his post-election press conference was that he’s prepared, he’s eager to sit down and work with anybody who has good ideas. He’s demonstrated his ability to do that, and he’s going to continue to do that,” Deese said. “It also will mean Republicans demonstrating that they want to work with him, so we’re going to have to see.”
The former investment banker claimed that during the early days of Biden’s time in office, “most people” would have doubted Biden could pass “multiple, historic bipartisan pieces of legislation through this very narrow Congress in strong bipartisan fashion.”
“We understand the reason for skepticism. We’re not in any way naive to how challenging the circumstances will be, but there’s lots of places where I think there’s a lot of bipartisan appetite to get things done, and so certainly that’ll be our orientation,” he added.
You can listen to Tuesday’s gaggle in full below.