Biden Says He’s Willing to Compromise on Infrastructure Plan – By Glenn Thrush and Jim Tankersley (The New York Times) / April 7 2021
President Biden on Wednesday signaled his openness to “good faith negotiations” on his $2.3 trillion infrastructure proposal — but bluntly warned Republican opponents of the plan that he would “not be open to doing nothing.”
© Amr Alfiky/The New York Times “To automatically say that the only thing that’s infrastructure is a highway, bridge, or whatever, that’s just not rational,” President Biden said on Wednesday.
Mr. Biden pushed back against critics who have argued that his sprawling plan contains elements — such as the renovation of veterans’ hospitals, expansion of broadband internet and anti-poverty programs — that do not fit the traditional definition of infrastructure.
“To automatically say that the only thing that’s infrastructure is a highway, bridge, or whatever, that’s just not rational,” said Mr. Biden, who urged Republicans to ask working-class Americans “what infrastructure they need to build a better life, to be able to breathe a little bit,” rather than rejecting his proposal on sight.
“I don’t know why we don’t get this,” added Mr. Biden, flanked by Vice President Kamala Harris as he delivered remarks in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, veering off script repeatedly to deliver an impassioned, at times exasperated plea of support.