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As previously discussed, Senate Democrats, with their slim tie-breaking vote majority, have been trying to find a way to pass an aggressive agenda. It includes not just an expansive $2 trillion American Jobs Plan “infrastructure” spending package – very broadly defined – but a massive tax increase to pay for much of it.
The Senate’s 1974 budget rules provide the only way a majority party can pass legislation by a simple majority (51 votes, if everyone shows up, including the Vice President). But it has fit within the context of a federal budget – spending and taxes – with further “Byrd rule” prohibitions against “extraneous” items, increasing the deficit beyond a certain point and touching Social Security.