Rashida Tlaib’s State of the Union response urges Biden to acknowledge ‘work is unfinished’

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Representative Rashida Tlaib said on Tuesday that President Biden must reinvigorate his $1.75 trillion backstop expansion legislation, giving a glimpse of the direction of the far left eight months from the midterm elections. mandate.

Responding to the State of the Union on behalf of the Working Families Party, Ms. Tlaib also urged Mr. Biden to use his executive authority to cancel student debt, ban new fossil fuel drilling and regulate carbon emissions without Congressional approval.

“With the majority of the Build Back Better agenda stalled, Mr President, our work is unfinished,” Ms Tlaib said in an online stream. “We are ready to restart our work. We still have time to cut costs for working families and preserve a livable planet for our grandchildren, but we need to act now.

Ms. Tlaib is part of “The Squad” in the House, a group of minority lawmakers fighting to push the Democratic Party further left on policy.

Ms. Tlaib, Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota and Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts created the group after the 2018 midterm elections.

They said Democrats must adopt a bold vision, urging the party to pass a Green New Deal and Medicare for All, funded by more business and corporation taxes.

Representative Jamaal Brown of New York and Cori Bush of Missouri joined the group after their 2020 election victories, and progressive liberal activists hope to increase their numbers in the 2022 midterm elections.

Ms. Tlaib said on Tuesday that no one fought harder to help push through Mr. Biden’s social safety net agenda, known as the Build Back Better plan, than liberal progressives.

The package was passed in the House before being bottled up in the Senate.

Democrats planned to circumvent GOP opposition in the Senate by pushing the bill through a budget mechanism called reconciliation, which would have allowed the proposal to pass with a simple majority.

The strategy, however, fizzled out after Mr. Biden and Senate Majority Leader Charles S. Schumer of New York failed to win over Democratic resisters — the senses. Joe Manchin III of West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona – or win any Republican. Support.

“Two forces stood in the way: a Republican party that serves only the rich and powerful, and just enough corporate-backed Democratic filibusters to help them succeed,” Ms. Tlaib said.

Ms. Tlaib said Mr. Biden deserves credit for embracing the coronavirus relief package, getting our relief checks, curbing home evictions and sending resources to schools and local state governments.

To move forward, she said, Congress should push for universal health care, stand up to big pharma and insurance companies, and ensure that “abortion care” are a “fundamental right” that cannot be overruled by a Supreme Court.

Ms. Tlaib called on Congress to raise the federal minimum wage to “at least” $15 with adjustments for inflation, protect unions and enact paid family and medical leave.

Ms. Tlaib’s decision to deliver a response to the chairman of her own party did not sit well with some of her fellow Democrats.

“It’s like grabbing your own car and slashing your own tires,” Rep. Josh Gottheimer of New Jersey, co-chair of the House Problem Solvers Caucus, told Axios before his remarks.

It was a reminder of how the Squad’s far-left politics and fiery rhetoric have rubbed some centrist Democrats the wrong way. There are lingering concerns that their vision plays into the hands of the GOP and hurts the party’s ability to win over middle voters in swing states and competitive congressional districts.

On Tuesday, Ms. Tlaib directed her harshest criticism at Republicans, saying the GOP is “trying to destroy our working families and is prepared to tear down democracy to do so.”

“The midterm elections are fast approaching and this year we can elect the majority of working families that we all need,” Ms Tlaib said. “We know what happens when Republicans take power: they protect the rich and target us all.”

“They are attacking and undermining suffrage, women’s rights, workers’ rights, immigrants, people of color and our LGBTQ community and they are blocking progress on climate change,” she said. “So if you voted or knocked on doors or donated in 2020 to defeat [former President Donald] Trump, I implore you to be careful because this year is just as important and we need everyone to help us.

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