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Pennsylvania Representatives React After Infrastructure Bill Passes House

By: KDKA-TV News Staff

WASHINGTON D.C. (KDKA) -- After months of legislative gridlock, a $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill is expected to be signed into law by President Joe Biden.

The House of Representatives passed the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act late on Friday night, with six Democrats voting against and 13 Republicans voting for the proposed bill, according to CBS News.

"The United States House of Representatives passed the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, a once-in-generation bipartisan infrastructure bill that will create millions of jobs, turn the climate crisis into an opportunity, and put us on a path to win the economic competition for the 21st Century," Biden said.

However, several Pennsylvania Republican representatives are not pleased with the bill's passage.

U.S. Representative Glenn Thompson and Guy Reschenthaler, representing Pennsylvania's 15th and 14th Districts, voted against the bill and criticized House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

"There was an opportunity to come together and draft a bipartisan, bicameral bill to address America's aging infrastructure. Rather, House Democrats boldly linked infrastructure to a spending bill that is full of budget gimmicks and will cost American taxpayers trillions of dollars," Thompson said.

"I strongly support investment in our nation's physical infrastructure, including upgrading our aging locks and dams, and believe we must reform our burdensome permitting process. Unfortunately, it is shameful that Democrats used a bipartisan issue to advance their radical, socialist goals," Reschenthaler said.

U.S. Representative Mike Kelly, who represents the state's 16th District, said that Republicans' "cost-cutting proposals" were not considered.

"While I and many of my Republican colleagues were ready to work on real infrastructure proposals, this bill falls far short of our goals," U.S. Representative Mike Kelly said. "Democrats have added things to this bill that are not related to true, traditional infrastructure. We wanted to have a serious discussion with our Democratic friends, but Republicans were boxed out of these negotiations."

West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin, a Democrat, expressed his support of the House passing the bill late Friday night.

"I am pleased the House of Representatives passed this bipartisan legislation, and look forward to President Biden signing it into law," Manchin said. "I have always said that the best politics is good government, and I'm incredibly proud of my bipartisan colleagues for their tireless efforts to get this across the finish line and deliver on this major investment in the needs of America."

The Biden administration has said the bill will improve broadband internet access, efforts to tackle the effects of climate change and the quality of drinking water in many areas, among other initiatives.

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