- The Washington Times - Wednesday, September 22, 2021

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce released ads Wednesday against five vulnerable Democrats they endorsed during the last election, urging them to vote “no” on the party’s $3.5 trillion reconciliation bill.

The ads were put out against Reps. Cindy Axne of Iowa, Angie Craig of Minnesota, Josh Harder of California, Antonio Delgado of New York and Elaine Luria of Virginia.

The five lawmakers are considered at potential risk of losing their seats ahead of the 2022 midterms with every one of them listed on the National Republican Congressional Committee’s 57-member target list of vulnerable Democrats.

The ads, dubbed “All Sides” warn that the bill would impose “massive tax increases” on Americans on top of the economic hits brought by the COVID-19 pandemic and rising inflation.

“These tax hikes would be a body blow to our economy, injuring our recovery and taking more hard-earned money from small businesses and working families,” the ad says. 

The ads follow a letter sent last week by the chamber addressed to all House members, discouraging support for the social spending bill.

“No member of Congress, let alone the public, can comprehend or explain all the various proposals that have been thrown into this bill,” the letter read. “This is no way for Congress to legislate.”

The chamber signaled that it could expand its ad campaign to more districts in the future.

Democrats are working to gather enough voters to pass the social welfare bill that would appropriate funds for expanding Medicare, child and elder care, and universal pre-K.

The proposal is championed by far-left Democrats but has not won the support of some moderate Democrats in the House and Senate. 

Democrats plan to use the reconciliation process, which would allow the bill to clear the Senate with a simple majority and no Republican support.

However, Sens. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona and Joe Manchin of West Virginia, two centrist Democrats who have broken with their party in the past, have not pledged support of the $3.5 trillion plan.

With Democrats having 50 seats in the upper chamber, opposition from just the two senators would kill the legislation.

The bill also currently faces long odds in the House with mounting pressure on moderate Democrats to reject the proposal, despite the push by progressive members. Some House Democrats have also said the bill is too costly, suggesting a lower price tag may be more likely to gain support.

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