Senate Republicans delay passage of defense bill as Democrats scramble to fund government
12/01/2021 // Matthew Davis // Views

Senate Republicans successfully delayed the passage of a routine defense bill called the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) by Democrats, complicating the passage to fund the federal government.

The defense act is usually a bipartisan piece of legislation that has been passed for 60 years.

By delaying the passage of the NDAA, the Republicans tightened the screws on the Senate Democrats' legislative calendar with the intention of thwarting the massive tax and welfare package.

The legislative pileup continued to trouble Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY), who is eyeing to pass the $1.9 trillion reconciliation package.

"It's about a general effort to obstruct anything that's going on, with the hope that will reflect poorly on Joe Biden," Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) told Politico about the Republicans' successful effort Monday, Nov. 29.

"It's incompetence of managing the bill," said Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX). "We can get it done this week. They don't have their act together on reconciliation yet, so it's not to delay that."

Schumer is reportedly trying to get Sen. Mitch McConnel (R-KY) on board to pass a measure to partially fund the government only until late January, but no outcome has resulted from talks.

The Democrat from New York is likely angling to fund the government only until late January to avoid a larger fight with the Republicans, while freeing up calendar days to pass the reconciliation package.

Schumer wants a vote on the reconciliation package before Christmas, an aggressive schedule. Yet Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV), who has slow-walked the reconciliation process, stated he is fine with the package being considered in 2022.


In order to pass the reconciliation package on time, Senate Democrats must fund the government, raise the debt ceiling before December 15, and pass the NDAA.

"It's our responsibility to make sure that we take care of the debt ceiling. And Democrats are now in control, so we want to make sure we do it and do it right," Manchin said.

Survey says Biden responsible for dividing people

Most Americans believe President Biden is responsible for dividing the American people, a Convention of States/Trafalgar Group survey released Tuesday, Nov. 30, found.

"To what extent do you believe President Biden is responsible for the divisions in the American people?" the survey asked.

Overall, 54.2 percent said Biden is responsible for dividing Americans, and of those, 39.4 percent said he is "very" responsible. Meanwhile, 45.8 percent said he is generally not responsible for the division. (Related: More than half of U.S. states vow to fight Biden's vaccine mandate.)

The vast majority of Democrats, 78.7 percent, do not believe Biden is responsible for dividing the American people, but most of the Republicans and independents do – 88 percent and 64.1 percent, respectively.

The survey, taken from November 13 to 16 among 1,092 likely general election voters, has a margin of error of +/- 2.97 percent.

While Biden made several mentions of unity in his inauguration speech 10 months ago, his presidency has been plagued by divisive rhetoric as he directly pitted vaccinated Americans against unvaccinated Americans.

"We've been patient, but our patience is wearing thin," he said in a September 9 speech, scolding unvaccinated Americans. "And your refusal has cost all of us. So, please, do the right thing."

In that same speech, where he announced the controversial Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) rule forcing employers with 100 or more employees to implement vaccine mandates or testing requirements, Biden said his administration was going to protect vaccinated workers from unvaccinated co-workers – once again pitting Americans against each other.

More recently, in light of the Omicron variant, Biden said lockdowns are off the table for now but suggested that unvaccinated people, as well as those who do not wear masks, are the reasons one would be necessary.

"If people are vaccinated and wear their masks, there's no need for the lockdown," he said.

Notably, Biden was recently spotted inside a store in Nantucket without a mask on. However, the White House maintains the president follows the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's mask guidance.

Follow for more news on the Biden administration.

Sources include:

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