The House on Friday narrowly passed the Biden administration’s domestic agenda—the Build Back Better plan—, approving $2.2 trillion in spending over the next decade to battle climate change, expand health care and reweave the nation’s social safety net. Texas’ congressional delegation voted along party lines, with every Republican lawmaker voting in opposition to the bill.
The bill’s passage, 220 to 213, came after months of contentious negotiations that culminated in a rambling record-breaking speech of more than eight hours by the House Republican leader, Rep. Kevin McCarthy. The package is one of Congress’ largest bills in history, and is set to establish universal pre-K, provide funding to combat climate change and expand social safety net programs.
“It puts us on the path to build our economy back better than before by rebuilding the backbone of America: working people and the middle class,” President Biden said in a statement. He urged the Senate to swiftly pass the measure, where it requires only a simple majority, but will likely be reshaped and sent back to the House.
The Texas delegation voted along party lines on the bill. No Republicans voted for the measure, and U.S. Rep. Jared Golden of Maine was the only Democrat to vote against it.
“Under this dome, for centuries, members of Congress have stood exactly where we stand to pass legislation of extraordinary consequence in our nation’s history and for our nation’s future,” Speaker Nancy Pelosi said, adding, the act “will be the pillar of health and financial security in America.”