November 08, 2021

New Democrat Coalition Weekly Wrap 11/8/2021

Last week, New Democrat Coalition (NDC) Members took action to send the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) to the President’s desk and move forward on the Build Back Better Act (BBBA). New Dems have been fighting to deliver on the Build Back Better economic agenda for their constituents and have partnered closely with President Biden, Congressional leadership and committees, and administration officials to shape the policy and advance both as quickly as possible.

The Coalition recently endorsed both the Build Back Better Framework and the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. NDC members are policy leaders in Congress and played a key role in ensuring the Build Back Better Act reflects the Coalition’s top priorities to give middle class families a tax cut, expand affordable health coverage and care, tackle climate change, and grow the economy and create jobs and opportunities all across the nation. The Coalition also secured provisions in IIJA that reflect 15 NDC-endorsed bills to build funding and financing to last; build resilient, innovative infrastructure for the future; and build with smart and inclusive planning, zoning, and development.   

ICYMI: Last week, the Coalition released a statement applauding the US–EU Section 232 Tariff agreement announced by Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo and United States Trade Representative Katherine Tai. The NDC welcomes this agreement to provide much needed relief to American families, workers, producers, and manufacturers, and to better coordinate with our allies and close-trading partners. The NDC looks forward to continuing to work with the administration to develop a strong, smart trade agenda that promotes economic growth and American jobs, as well as reasserts U.S. support for and leadership of multilateral institutions and the global rules-based trading system. Secretary Raimondo also visited with New Dem Members last week to discuss the Build Back Better economic agenda and current supply chain circumstances. 

More on what New Dems have been up to below. 

New Dems in the News 

NDC Chair Suzan DelBene on MSNBC“The New Democrat Coalition has really focused on how important it is that we show folks that governance works”

WW 11/8 #4 

NDC Chair Suzan DelBene (WA-01) appeared on MSNBC this weekend to discuss next steps on the Build Back Better Act, the NDC’s policy leadership and commitment to get stuff done. 

NDC Chair Emeritus Derek Kilmer on Fox News: “Democrats are united in the belief that we should do something to provide more affordable health care to families”

WW 11/8 #3

NDC Chair Emeritus Derek Kilmer (WA-06) spoke about the transformative impact the Build Back Better Act will have to improve American’s lives on Fox News.

NDC Chair Suzan DelBene on MSNBC : “We can’t help anyone until we get legislation across the finish line”

WW 11/8 #2

NDC Chair Suzan DelBene (WA-01) appeared on MSNBC to talk about the NDC’s commitment to passing both the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act and the Build Back Better Act to help Americans.  

NDC Leadership Member Stacey Plaskett on Fox News: “[The Child Tax Credit] has reduced child poverty by 50%”  

WW 11/8

On Fox News, NDC Leadership Member Stacey Plaskett (VI-AL) spoke about the investments the Build Back Better Act will make in our families, health care, and planet.

Coalition Highlights 

  • NDC Members advanced the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) out of Congress for the President’s signature. The IIJA makes robust, badly needed investments to modernize our nation’s infrastructure, create good-paying jobs, spur economic growth, and combat climate change. The infrastructure package incorporates provisions that reflect fifteen NDC-endorsed bills and the Coalition’s infrastructure priorities
  • NDC Members also took action to move the Build Back Better Act forward and continue to work to pass this transformative legislation as quickly as possible
  • NDC Chair Suzan DelBene’s (WA-01) Statement on the passage of IIJA reads: 
    • “The American people elected Democrats to get stuff done, and today, New Dems, our colleagues, and the President delivered for our communities. New Dems have been leading on policy and pushing for swift action on the President’s Build Back Better economic agenda. This legislation makes long-overdue investments to modernize our nation’s infrastructure, grow the economy, create quality jobs, tackle the climate crisis, and ensure our people and nation have the tools and opportunities to compete and succeed in the 21st century.”
  • At the end of October, the New Democrat Coalition (NDC) endorsed the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act and the Build Back Better Framework that the White House unveiled before the House Democratic Caucus.
  • Since the beginning of the reconciliation process, New Dems have been committed to getting both bills across the finish line as soon as possible.
  • The NDC has been focused on policy and fought to secure New Dem Members’ top priorities to deliver for American families, workers, and communities.
  • Trade Task Force Co-Chairs Ron Kind (WI-03) and Lizzie Fletcher (TX-07), NDC Chair Suzan DelBene (WA-01), and NDC Vice Chair for Policy Scott Peters (CA-52) released a statement following Secretary Raimondo and Ambassador Tai’s announcement of an agreement between the EU and US to remove harmful tariffs and better coordinate to address overcapacity. 
  • The statement reads in part, “We commend President Biden, Secretary Raimondo, and Ambassador Tai, as well as our European Union counterparts, on reaching an agreement to end the Trump Administration's misguided and damaging Section 232 tariffs on steel and aluminum while eliminating the retaliatory tariffs from the E.U. The new agreement provides much-needed relief for America's farmers and manufacturers and makes tremendous progress toward better coordination with our allies.”
  • New Democrat Coalition Leadership Members sent a letter to Speaker Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Schumer urging action on the Coalition’s top priorities in the Build Back Better Act – and for immediate passage of the reconciliation and infrastructure bills to the President.
  • The NDC has advocated for a bill that does fewer things well, and has been fighting to ensure the Build Back Better Act extends the enhanced Child Tax Credit with full refundability; builds on the Affordable Care Act toward universal access to affordable health coverage and care; goes big on climate change and maximizes emissions reductions; and invests in comprehensive place-based economic development to empower persistently distressed communities to create lasting jobs and opportunities.

Member Bill Action 

Rice’s Fiscal State of the Nation Resolution Passes House

  • The House of Representatives passed Rep. Kathleen Rice’s (NY-04) bipartisan Fiscal State of the Nation Resolution. This legislation would require the U.S. Comptroller General to present the Financial Report of the United States annually before a joint hearing of the House and Senate Budget Committees, open to all members of Congress.

Strickland Amendment to Strengthen Workplace Equity for Women & Mothers Passes House

  • Rep. Marilyn Strickland (WA-10)’s amendment to the PUMP for Nursing Mothers Act, which protects workers by expanding access to breastfeeding accommodations in the workplace, passed the House. Her amendment strengthens the bill by directing the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to conduct a study on racial disparities in access to pump breastmilk in the workplace and requires the GAO to report recommendations to Congress to address those disparities.
  • Rep. Strickland is a member of the Black Maternal Health Caucus and a Leader in the Pro-Choice Caucus.

Member New Legislation

Fletcher Introduces the Bipartisan FEMA Relief Extension Act

  • Rep. Lizzie Fletcher (TX-07) introduced the bipartisan FEMA Relief Extension Act which extends the period of time for individuals and households to receive Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) temporary housing assistance from 18 months to 24 months following a presidentially declared emergency or disaster. 

Wexton Introduces Bipartisan Bill to Develop National Domestic Violence Prevention Plan

  • Rep. Jennifer Wexton (VA-10) introduced the bipartisan National Domestic Violence Prevention Action Plan Act this week. The legislation aims to reduce the likelihood of violence through expanding, coordinating, and evaluating prevention programs like healthy relationship education and bystander empowerment.

Demings Introduces Legislation to Fund Police Investigation of Gun Crimes

  • Rep. Val Demings (FL-10) introduced the Violent Incident Clearance and Technological Investigative Methods (VICTIM) Act. The legislation would establish a Department of Justice grant program to hire, train, and retain detectives and victim services personnel to investigate shootings and support victims. 

Carbajal Introduces Bipartisan Bill to Expand Childcare for Military Families

  • Rep. Salud Carbajal (CA-24) introduced the bipartisan and bicameral Childcare Expansion for Military Families Act. This legislation improves and increases childcare services for military families.

Member Action

Demings Calls for Work Authorizations for Asylum Seekers

  • Rep. Val Demings (FL-10) led a letter to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services requesting changes that would help asylum seekers with existing Employment Authorization Documents (EAD) continue working in the United States. These changes would make it easier for legal asylum seekers in the U.S. to sustain continuous employment.

Bustos in Newsweek: "We Must Unite and Build Back Better" (Op-Ed)

  • Rep. Cheri Bustos (IL-17) penned an op-ed in Newsweek to express her support for passing the bipartisan infrastructure package and the Build Back Better Act to actually help constituents. 
  • Bustos writes in part, “In politics, personal beliefs and even geographic location, the district I serve is the epitome of "the middle." Our rural and mid-sized communities are made up of working families trying to do better day by day. In this, they are more united than politics could ever divide them. And they are tired of the endless broadcasts and articles about how Washington works and who is fighting with whom. They just want Washington to work for them.”

Norcross in South Jersey Times: “Critical to N.J. for child care support to remain in ‘Build Back Better’" (Op-Ed)

  • Rep. Donald Norcross (NJ-01) penned an op-ed in the South Jersey Times emphasizing the importance of including child care support in the final Build Back Better Act to help our families and economy.