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AOC criticizes lack of diversity among Senate infrastructure bill negotiators

Kendall Tietz, DCNF

After President Joe Biden confirmed the bipartisan infrastructure proposal Thursday, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez took to Twitter to criticize the lack of diversity among the proposal’s senate negotiators,

“The diversity of this ‘bipartisan coalition’ pretty perfectly conveys which communities get centered and which get left behind when leaders prioritize bipartisan dealmaking over inclusive lawmaking (which prioritizes delivering the most impact possible for the most people),” Ocasio-Cortez tweeted. Biden negotiated the $1.2 trillion infrastructure package with a bipartisan group of lawmakers, reaching an agreement after weeks of ongoing negotiations.

The negotiating group consisted of five Democrats and five Republicans, who announced the deal alongside Biden on Thursday at the White House.

She followed up with a criticism of the bipartisan agreement itself by tweeting, “This is why a bipartisan pkg alone isn’t acceptable. The exclusion & denial of our communities is what DC bipartisan deals require.”

“But this reminds me of the days we used to get an awful lot done in the United States Congress, we actually worked with one another,” Biden said during the announcement. “Bipartisan deal means compromise.”

Biden said the proposal does not include everything he had hoped for but that the deal was “really important,” and that “they gave more than I think maybe they were inclined to give in the first place.” He said he plans to focus next on a larger spending package that can be passed through budget reconciliation, which bypasses the filibuster and allows a bill to go through the Senate with a simple majority vote.

In another tweet, Ocasio-Cortez said representatives of excluded communities are considered “unreasonable” when they object to the exclusion and marginalization required to make a bipartisan deal work and that corporations and structural racism often benefit from “this type” of bipartisan lawmaking.

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