Biden’s ambitious social spending plan stalled by stubborn senators

The plan to fund federal programmes on everything from climate change to affordable housing grants to lower prescription drug prices requires the support of all 50 Democratic senators, but two of his more conservative members are holding out

US president Joe Biden hopes to get the go-ahead for his $1.2 trillion construction plan and a reduced $3.5 trillion social spending bill if he can persuade two last Democratic senators to sign it. Picture: Getty

Time is running out for US president Joe Biden. His big social spending agenda is paralysed by Democratic intransigence, specifically that of Democratic senators Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema.

As another week and another Democratic deadline for action passed on Capitol Hill, three major pieces of legislation, each of them critical to the success of Biden’s presidency, failed to advance. But as pressure on at least one errant Democrat mounts, a quiet confidence is emerging ...