Index > 100+
Sunday, October 10, 2021
ANBOUND's Observation: President Biden Betting on Congress to Pass Infrastructure Bill
Chan Kung

With U.S. President Joe Biden’s approval rating falls to as low as 38%, White House aides revealed that Biden has become deeply involved in congressional affairs, and that the President now spends most of his day on legislative priorities in Congress. Getting Congress to pass infrastructure bill and gain economic trust and support is now the consensus of Biden and his team, and seems to be the only way to win another term.

President Biden is now said to be briefed on the negotiations almost every morning by senior aides in the Oval Office and receives multiple updates throughout the day. Louisa Terrell, who heads the White House Office of Legislative Affairs, often attends these meetings with Brian Deese, Director of the National Economic Council; Susan Rice, White House Director of Domestic Policy Council; and Steve Ricchetti, Biden's counselor and longtime aide.

Biden's approach, aides said, was to encourage the Democrats of all ideologies to describe what would get them to sign on, rather than trying to force them to support the President's blueprint.

"Barack Obama's attitude was: 'This is what we think.' Joe Biden was more like: 'What can we do? How can we meet you?'" said an administration official who has worked with Biden for years and asked not to be named. "It's all about hearing where the other person is coming from".

The President's top advisers have also adopted this approach. Prior to the meeting, congressional aides often plan how best to gain approval from White House officials for specific positions, according to several people involved in the negotiations.

People familiar with the matter have also pointed out that, officials, including Terrell and Deese, are often wary of Biden's personal beliefs and their own opinions because they are so elusive.