Some school districts across the country are taking it upon themselves to issue mask mandates on campus in states where these mandates are banned.
Democrats push forward to try to pass a $3.5 trillion spending plan using the reconciliaton process and bypassing a filibuster. This, after 19 Republicans went along to help adopt a $1.2 trillion infractructure package.
We talked about that on this week’s with Scott County Democratic Party Chair Elesha Gayman and former Rock Island County Republican Party Chair Bill Bloom.
Months of negotiations in the U.S. Senate paid off for Democrats when the legislation passed the upper chamber this week.
Here’s a quick breakdown of the money for Iowa and Illinois.
Senator Chuck Grassley says Iowa’s in line to get at least $4.86 billion for roads, bridges and clean water with more to be determined for things like airports and expanding broadband service.
Senator Tammy Duckworth indicates Illinois is poised to get more than $15 billion for roads, bridges, public transportation options, broadband and supporting an electric vehicle charging network.
This still needs to be approved by the House of Representatives.
Grassley, Duckworth and Illinois Senator Dick Durbin voted for it.
Iowa Senator Joni Ernst voted no.
Gayman and Bloom discussed the significance that 19 Republicans went along with it and if it is rare or signals there’s more room for cooperation.
Senate Democrats didn’t stop with the infrastructure bill.
They already adopted a budget resolution in favor of a $3.5 trillion spending plan.
This is not the actual legislation.
This will not be bipartisan.
Democrats will try to push it through the reconciliation process that can circumvent a Republican filibuster.
They see it as a way to complement the infrastructure bill with money for the party’s priorities like climate initiatives, paid family leave, child care, education and health care.
Democrats would be paid for by raising taxes on the wealthy.
It will take all 50 senators to stay in line to adopt it.
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi says she won’t bring the infrastructure bill to the floor of the House until the Senate also passes this massive spending plan.
Reuters reports the reconciliation process has been used more than 20 times since 1980 by both parties.
Bloom and Gayman addressed if reconciliaton is useful or unfair and if it means the time has come to get rid of the filibuster.
Some school districts across the country are fighting back against laws passed in their states that ban mask mandates.
Districts in parts of Florida and Arizona are ignoring the bans and requiring masks in schools for example.
COVID-19 cases are climbing rapidly in those areas.
Parents held a sit-in outside the Iowa State Capitol calling on Governor Kim Reynolds to drop the ban on mask mandates.
Florida’s governor threatens to block salaries for superintendents who require masks.
They say all politics is local.
Gayman and Bloom shared their thoughts on allowing local control.
Watch the full discussion in the video above.
Question of the week
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