As Talks Bog Down, Hopes for Bipartisan Deals on Biden’s Priorities Dim


“We would like bipartisanship, but I don’t think we have a seriousness on the part of the Republican leadership to address the major crises facing this country,” Mr. Sanders stated. “If they’re not coming forward, we’ve got to go forward alone.”

Negotiations have additionally stalled on policing reform, with three lawmakers nonetheless unable to achieve an settlement on how or whether or not to change the authorized legal responsibility defend for particular person law enforcement officials — referred to as qualified immunity — to make it simpler to carry civil lawsuits in opposition to them for wrongdoing. Disagreement over whether or not to vary that doctrine had doomed makes an attempt to go policing laws final summer season, amid a nationwide outcry for reform.

Mr. Biden had hoped lawmakers would broker a deal before May 25, the anniversary of the death of George Floyd, a Black man who was murdered by a white Minneapolis police officer. But a breakthrough has remained elusive regardless of continued, closed-door negotiations between Representative Karen Bass, Democrat of California, and Senators Cory Booker, Democrat of New Jersey, and Tim Scott, Republican of South Carolina.

“We want to eliminate qualified immunity, and that is where we’re starting,” Mr. Booker stated in an interview broadcast on CNN’s “State of the Union” on Sunday. “Clearly, you’ve heard very publicly the red lines on the other side. And again, this is one of the big issues that we’re working very hard to see if we can bridge this wide gulf.”

Prospects to create an unbiased fee to research the Jan. 6 Capitol assault additionally dimmed final week, as Republican leaders dug in in opposition to the fee in an try and doom its prospects within the Senate despite the fact that one in every of their very own House members negotiated its particulars with Democrats.

The Republican leaders of each chambers, Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky and Representative Kevin McCarthy of California, have opposed the creation of such a panel. Mr. McConnell warnedthat Democrats had partisan motives in transferring to arrange the fee and would attempt to use it as a cudgel against Republicans in the 2022 midterm elections.

Several rank-and-file Republican senators who had publicly mulled backing the fee rapidly fell in line, adopting the argument that the proposal was not really bipartisan and that the investigation would take too lengthy, underscoring a tough path for Democrats to achieve the 60-vote threshold required for passage of the invoice within the evenly divided Senate.



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