Van Hollen, Warnock, Moran: Working With Staff to Read 2,702-Page Infrastructure Bill

By Ashlianna Kreiner | August 6, 2021 | 2:53pm EDT
(Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

(CNS News) – When asked whether they will read the 2,702-page infrastructure spending bill now under consideration in the Senate, Sens. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), Raphael Warnock (D-Ga.), and Jerry Moran (R-Kans.) said they were trying to get through it on their own or with help from their staff.

At the U.S. Capitol on Aug. 3, CNSNews.com asked the senators if they would read all 2,702 pages of the infrastructure bill before they vote on it, a vote that is tentatively scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 7.

Sen. Van Hollen replied, “Well, I’m working my way through it diligently now and we’re—my goal is to get through it.”

CNSNews.com asked Van Hollen the follow-up question, “Do you believe any of your colleagues will be able to read all 2,702 pages as well?”

He replied, “You’re going to have to ask them. Like I said, I’m working my way through it and this debate is going to go on for a number of days now.”

When CNSNews.com asked Sen. Warnock if he would read all of the bill he replied, “I will read everything that’s put in front of me that’s necessary to make a decision.”

Sen. Moran said, “Me and my staff will study the bill.”

The estimated cost of the infrastructure bill is $1.2 trillion. The title of the legislation is the “Bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act.” In a fact sheet posted Tuesday, the White House amended the title to read, “Bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act: Advancing Economic and Public Health Opportunities for Communities of Color.” 

“The Bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act addresses economic disparities in our economy and the consequences of decades of disinvestment in America’s infrastructure that have fallen most heavily on communities of color,” according to the White House. “Through critical investments, the legislation increases access to good-paying jobs, affordable high-speed internet, reliable public transit, clean drinking water and other resources to ensure communities of color get a fair shot at the American dream.”

(Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

“These critical investments are first steps in advancing equity and racial justice throughout our economy,” reads the fact sheet. It further says that the bill will safeguard “communities of color from climate crises and extreme weather risks.”

In an Aug. 3 statement about funding the infrastructure bill, Senators Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), Rick Scott (R-Fla.), Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), Mike Braun (R-Ind.), Josh Hawley (R-Mo.), and Mike Lee (R-Utah) said, “We can't spend money we don't have. Period. Just look at what is happening with inflation. We were promised this infrastructure bill was fully paid for, and now we see that it's not. This was nothing more than a bait and switch.

“$205 billion of this bill was to be paid for with repurposed COVID funds. The latest proposal only shows $50 billion in COVID funds being used, as well as a lot of the proposed ‘pay-fors' missing. So we are asking our colleagues: How is this infrastructure spending bill being paid for? We still don't know.

Sen. Raphael Warnock (D-Ga.)   (Getty Images)
Sen. Raphael Warnock (D-Ga.) (Getty Images)

"We still don't have a score on this legislation from the Congressional Budget Office. Let's not forget, this is just the first step in the Democrats' plan to pass their $5.5 trillion tax-and-spend liberal wish list. We support infrastructure, but it has to be paid for. This proposal isn't it."

Transcript

Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.)

CNSNews.com: “Will you be able to read all 2,702 pages of the infrastructure bill before you vote on it?”

Sen. Van Hollen: “Well, I’m working my way through it diligently now and we’re—my goal is to get through it.”

CNSNews.com: “All right, and do you believe any of your colleagues will be able to read all 2,702 pages as well?”

Sen. Van Hollen: “You’re going to have to ask them. Like I said, I’m working my way through it and this debate is going to go on for a number of days now.

Sen. Raphael Warnock (D-Ga.)

CNSNews.com: “Will you be able to read all 2,702 pages before you vote on it? For the infrastructure bill?”

Sen. Warnock: “I will read everything that’s put in front of me that’s necessary to make a decision.”

Sen. Jerry Moran (R-Kans.)

CNSNews.com: “Will you read all 2,702 pages of the infrastructure bill before you vote?”

Sen. Moran: “Me and my staff will study the bill.”

MRC Store