Biden: 'It's clear to me' Democrats have to break up Build Back Better Act into 'big chunks'

"I think we can break the package up, get as much as we can now, and come back and fight for the rest later," Biden says

Updated: January 19, 2022 - 5:13pm

President Joe Biden said on Wednesday that he thinks "big chunks" of the Build Back Better Act can pass before this year’s midterm elections.

"I'm confident we can get pieces, big chunks, of the Build Back Better law signed into law," Biden said at a news conference marking his first year in office. "It's clear to me we're probably going to have to break it up."

Biden said the more than $500 billion in climate-related funding in the original bill could probably pass on its own. He added that some of the tax increases in the package have strong support among Democrats.

The House-passed version of the bill has stalled in the 50-50 Senate after West Virginia Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin said he would vote against it.

Biden said Manchin is a “strong” supporter of universal pre-K for 3 and 4 year olds, which is part of the House-passed version.

"I think we can break the package up, get as much as we can now, and come back and fight for the rest later," he said.

Biden was asked about Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell saying this year's midterm elections will be a referendum on his job performance.

In response, Biden said his report card is going to "look pretty good."

“I actually like Mitch McConnell," Biden added. “The fundamental question is what is Mitch for?"

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