Biden walk-back doesn’t solve Democrats’ divide: The Note

The TAKE with Rick Klein

President Joe Biden just might have been able to fix what he may have broken.

That’s not the same as saying there’s a bill that can pass Congress – much less two.

Biden’s walk-back of his vow to only support the bipartisan effort if the much larger Democrats-only bill also reaches his desk helped assuage Republicans. It has not had a similar impact inside his own party.

Prominent progressives and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi are still on record saying the bipartisan agreement reached last week will only get their support if the budget reconciliation process delivers on the much broader and more expensive set of promises Democrats have made.

As for that potentially $6 trillion package being crafted by Sen. Bernie Sanders and others, it’s nowhere near ready, and there’s still no guarantee that Democrats have the votes. Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., put a price tag of between $1 trillion and $2 trillion on what he can support, or else “I can’t be there,” he told Jonathan Karl on ABC’s “This Week” Sunday.

Biden’s lengthy clarification over the weekend referenced but did not really solve the apparent disconnect. He invited Republicans to oppose the larger package and the method used to pass it, if they so choose, while reiterating his commitment to both paths leading to his desk.

“We will let the American people - and the Congress – decide,” the president said.

For those scoring at home, the bipartisan infrastructure deal has already been off, on, off and now on again, at least for now. The larger package, relying on the slim Democratic congressional majorities to address so-called “human infrastructure,” has never really been on yet at all.

The RUNDOWN with Averi Harper

Following Vice President Kamala Harris’ trip to El Paso, Texas, Republicans can no longer say she hasn’t visited the U.S.-Mexico border, but that doesn’t mean they won’t find a way to criticize her anyway.

Harris, who spent about four hours on the ground in El Paso, has taken heat for not visiting the Rio Grande Valley, where the influx of migrants has been higher. She has also struggled to clarify what success looks like in the short term as it relates to the number of migrants presenting themselves for asylum at the border.

Her trip came before former President Donald Trump is slated to visit the border with Texas Gov. Greg Abbott Wednesday.

“Kamala Harris, your vice president, only went to the border yesterday for the one simple reason: that I announced that I was going,” Trump said during a rally in Ohio Saturday. “If I didn’t do that, I don’t know if she was ever going to go.”

Harris’ team has vehemently denied that claim.

The difference between Harris’ and Trump’s trips is that there are actual political implications for Harris. Her performance as it relates to migration could be either a blemish on her record or a feather in her cap if she pursues the presidency in the future, as is expected.

The TIP with Sydnie Cobb

The House of Representatives will vote this week on a resolution to create a select committee to investigate the Jan. 6 attack.

This vote comes nearly a month after Senate Republicans blocked a bill that would have created an independent commission to examine the insurrection. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced the formation of a select committee Thursday.

Pelosi provided minimal details about the committee, including who will sit on or chair it, but she did confirm the committee would be bipartisan and that she hopes House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy will "appoint responsible people to the committee."

The House speaker will almost certainly have the votes to establish the panel, however, it is unclear if GOP leaders will appoint any members to it. McCarthy refused to acknowledge the committee in his weekly Friday presser, asserting that Pelosi has never discussed it with him.

One of the last notable House select committees was established following the 2012 Benghazi attacks. Pelosi -- then the House minority leader -- appointed five Democrats to serve on it in 2014, but said, "This is a Committee that should not have been formed. It has been investigated eight times. But since the Republicans chose to form it, I think we have to participate."


ABC News Chief Washington Correspondent Jonathan Karl writes in The Atlantic about interviews for his forthcoming book he had with former Attorney General William Barr this spring, in which Barr gives -- for the first time -- his version of the events surrounding his break with former President Donald Trump.


ABC News' "Start Here" podcast. Monday morning’s episode features ABC News’ Stephanie Ramos, who brings us up to speed on rescue efforts in Surfside, Florida, where the death toll is rising following last week’s building collapse. ABC News Senior Washington reporter Devin Dwyer explains why the Department of Justice is suing the state of Georgia over voting rights legislation. And ABC News Chief Meteorologist Ginger Zee explains why climate change could be to blame for record temperatures scorching the Northwest.

FiveThirtyEight's Politics Podcast. In this installment of the FiveThirtyEight Politics podcast, Galen Druke and Nate Silver open the mailbag to answer listeners' questions about politics, polling and hot dogs. Specifically, listeners want to know what to make of New York City's mayoral race, whether primary elections tell us anything about the midterm elections, which voting system is the best, the likelihood of filibuster reform and, of course, whether hot dogs are considered sandwiches.


  • President Joe Biden receives the president's daily brief at 9:50 a.m. He then welcomes Israel President Reuven Rivlin to the White House at 4 p.m.
  • Rep. John Katko, R-N.Y., appears on ABC's "GMA3: What You Need to Know."
  • Press Secretary Jen Psaki holds a press briefing at 12:30 p.m.
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