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Infrastructure negotiations “will fall apart, and they need to fall apart” because the massive amounts of money won’t end up being evenly distributed between rural and urban parts of the United States and the sides in the argument won’t agree to the amounts to be approved, former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows said Friday.
“I don’t see a lot of negotiations happening two blocks from where I am,” Meadows said on Fox Business’ “Mornings With Maria.” “[The negotiations] will fall apart, and they need to fall apart. We do not need additional federal government spending. We don’t need three-and-one-half trillion; we don’t even need a trillion.”
His argument comes after comments from Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez that her progressive caucus will kill any infrastructure deal that doesn’t include a $3.5 trillion measure later, including higher taxes.
On Tuesday night, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said the Budget Committee had reached an agreement to allow $3.5 trillion for a spending package that would complete President Joe Biden’s infrastructure plan.
“You add that to the $600 billion in a bipartisan plan and you get to $4.1 trillion, which is very, very close to what President Biden has asked us for,” Schumer said. “Every major program that President Biden has asked us for is funded in a robust way.”
Ocasio-Cortez called the reconciliation package a “progressive victory,” according to NY1 in New York City, and said that “if it wasn’t for progressives in the House, we probably would be stuck with that tiny, pathetic bipartisan bill alone.”
Meadows downplayed her comments, telling show host Maria Bartiromo that “AOC’s progressive caucus never stopped anything in Washington, D.C. They talk a lot, but they don’t actually stop anything.”
Meadows added that when he was in Congress, members of his caucus used its leverage to ensure fiscal accountability and that the spending bill and its inequality in asset allocation will have trouble meeting with approval from senators in rural states, such as Democrat Joe Manchin from West Virginia.
Meanwhile, the government must focus on making sure American people actually go back to work, Meadows said.
“We have got to quit paying them for staying at home,” Meadows said. “Manufacturing is having a hard time getting workers. People tuned in right now know how hard it is to find workers. [If] we continue to overstimulate the economy, it will create inflation.”