Senators voted 66-28 on a movement to proceed, a vote that can open up the legislative bundle to potential modifications by the modification course of. Sixteen Republican senators voted with Senate Democrats in favor.
It stays to be seen whether or not any amendments will likely be agreed to since they’re anticipated to be topic to a 60-vote threshold. Invoice textual content nonetheless has not but been formally unveiled, and amendments usually are not anticipated to be thought of till Senate Majority Chief Chuck Schumer affords up the finalized deal in its place modification, which may occur sooner or later later Friday afternoon. The expectation is that there may very well be modification votes over the weekend.
“Given the bipartisan nature of the invoice, the Senate ought to have the ability to course of this laws slightly shortly,” Schumer mentioned Friday forward of the vote. “We may have the weekend, we could vote on a number of amendments, however with the cooperation of our Republican colleagues I consider we will end the bipartisan infrastructure invoice in a matter of days.”
The procedural vote had been briefly delayed on Friday as lawmakers squabbled over legislative textual content and Republicans accused Democratic management of attempting to substitute an alternate model as base textual content of the invoice that differed from the bipartisan accord. GOP Sen. Rob Portman of Ohio, a lead negotiator within the bipartisan group, mentioned, nonetheless, that Schumer had given him assurances that may not occur and he would let the bipartisan invoice function the underlying proposal.
“The rumors and innuendos are false,” a Democratic aide advised CNN. “Schumer agreed from the start the substitute would be the agreed-to textual content from the bipartisan group. That is nonetheless the case.”
The Senate is racing to go the bipartisan deal earlier than leaving for the fast-approaching August recess, which is scheduled to begin on the finish of subsequent week although leaders within the chamber may change that.
Step one in passing that bigger invoice will likely be for the Senate to undertake a funds decision.
Schumer mentioned on Friday that they continue to be “on observe” to go each a bipartisan infrastructure invoice and a funds decision earlier than the August recess.
“It is an formidable deadline, completely. However the exhausting work put in by senators and workers signifies that we’re heading in the right direction to get it accomplished,” he mentioned.
This story has been up to date with further developments Friday.