The Senate voted 67–32 to advance a roughly $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure proposal on Wednesday night.
The vote comes one month after negotiators initially said they had reached a deal on infrastructure. A bipartisan group of ten senators and the White House then spent weeks finalizing the details of the proposal.
The 17 Republican senators who voted to move the bill to formal debate included Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) and Senators Richard Burr (N.C.), Bill Cassidy (La.), Susan Collins (Maine), Shelley Moore Capito (W. Va.), Lisa Murkowski (Alaska), Rob Portman (Ohio), Mitt Romney (Utah), Thom Tillis (N.C.), Chuck Grassley (Iowa), Todd Young (Ind.), Mike Crapo (Idaho), Roy Blunt (Mo.), James Risch (Idaho), John Hoeven (N.D.), Lindsey Graham (S.C.) and Kevin Cramer (N.D.)
Senate Republicans last week blocked the start of formal debate on bipartisan infrastructure legislation as the text of the bill and cost of the proposal were not yet released.
However, Republican senators who voted in favor of advancing the bill on Wednesday said this time around enough details had been agreed to in order to begin debate.
“Reaching this agreement was no easy task — but our constituents expect us to put in the hard work and show that two parties can still work together to address the needs of the American people,” a bipartisan coalition of senators said in a statement.
The procedural vote begins a debate that could last days. It is unclear whether the bill, which includes $550 billion in new public-works spending, will ultimately gain enough support to pass.
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