WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — Talks in Washington, D.C. over an infrastructure package have been stalled for months over one issue: how much money the government should spend on the project.
Democrats say the package should be bold. They’ve been pushing for the creation of a Civilian Climate Corp that they say would fight climate change and create jobs.
Eighty Democrats are calling for the project’s creation to stimulate the economy and tackle clean energy projects, coastal restoration and wildfire prevention.
Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) said the Civilian Climate Corp would “confront the climate crisis and create millions of permanent, good-paying, union jobs.”
Senate leaders Schumer and Ron Wyden (D-OR) say they’ll ensure the infrastructure package includes funding for the project.
“We are going to have a broad birth in that budget resolution for a Civilian Climate Corp — period, full stop,” Wyden said.
Democrats say the country’s worsening heatwaves, wildfires and hurricanes point to the need for urgent action.
“This summer represents a tipping point that we can no longer deny the consequences of climate change,” said Rep. Judy Chu (D-CA).
But Senate Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) says Democrats already pumped too much money into the economy.
“Another multi-trillion-dollar reckless taxing and spending spree, believe me, is the last thing American families need,” McConnell said.
McConnell says overspending by the government is creating an inflation problem and a labor shortage.
“But according to President Biden, the solution is, listen to this, even more of the same,” he said.
Republicans want an infrastructure package to be narrowly targeted and exclude expensive initiatives aimed at fighting climate change.