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Dick Durbin, 77, tests positive as party tries to ram through Manchin deal

Another Democrat gets COVID and throws a wrench into Manchin’s deal: Dick Durbin, 77, tests positive as party tries to ram package for summer break

  • Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin said Thursday he tested positive for COVID-19
  • That could spell a break in Democrats’ plan to ram through the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 before the summer recess
  • Durbin said in a tweet that he had ‘only mild symptoms’ and would ‘continue to work remotely’
  • Durbin this week follows Democratic Senator Joe Manchin and Republican Senator Lisa Murkowski in positive COVID diagnoses
  • The Senate is trying to get a number of bills approved for the traditional August recess
  • Every Democratic vote is needed to pass Manchin’s compromise legislation and the Senate won’t allow remote voting

Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin said on Thursday he tested positive for COVID-19, which could spell a break in Democrats’ plan to ram through the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 before the summer recess.

This morning I tested positive for COVID-19. Fortunately I am fully vaccinated and double boosted and have only mild symptoms,” Durbin, 77, tweeted. “In accordance with CDC guidelines, I will quarantine and follow my doctor’s advice while continuing to work remotely.”

Durbin this week follows Democratic Senator Joe Manchin and Republican Senator Lisa Murkowski in positive COVID diagnoses.

Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin said Thursday he tested positive for COVID-19, which could spell a break in Democrats' plan to ram through the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 before the summer recess.

Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin said Thursday he tested positive for COVID-19, which could spell a break in Democrats’ plan to ram through the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 before the summer recess.

This morning I tested positive for COVID-19.  Fortunately I am fully vaccinated and double boosted and have only mild symptoms,

This morning I tested positive for COVID-19. Fortunately I am fully vaccinated and double boosted and have only mild symptoms,” Durbin, 77, tweeted.

sen.  Joe Manchin, who also had COVID this week, struck a deal with Senate Leader Chuck Schumer on a reconciliation package, which Schumer wants to approve before the August recess next week

sen. Joe Manchin, who also had COVID this week, struck a deal with Senate Leader Chuck Schumer on a reconciliation package, which Schumer wants to approve before the August recess next week

Details about the deal

Senator Manchin and Schumer’s new bill would bring in $739 billion in new revenue through several proposals:

$313 billion by introducing a 15 percent minimum corporate tax

$288 Billion by Enabling Medicare to Negotiate Lower Drug Prices

$124 Billion Due to Strong IRS Tax Enforcement

$14 billion from closing the loophole for money managers

It also includes $433 billion in new spending:

$369 billion in energy security and climate change

$64 billion to extend health care subsidies for the Affordable Care Act

Then there would be $300 billion left to reduce the deficit

The Senate is trying to get a number of bills passed before the traditional August recess – which should start next week – but every Democratic vote is needed to get Manchin’s compromise legislation over the line.

On Wednesday, the West Virginia Democrat surprised Washington by announcing, along with Senate majority Chuck Schumer, that they had reached an agreement on a reconciliation bill.

The reconciliation process allows Democrats to bypass a Republican-led filibuster and pass legislation with just a simple majority.

The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022, which is no longer called Build Back Better, includes both green energy and health care provisions and would be paid for by, among other things, introducing a 15 percent corporate tax, among other tax reforms.

Schumer said the Senate would vote on it next week.

Unlike the House, where members can vote by proxy, the vote in the Senate is held in person.

Durbin’s positive COVID case also comes after President Joe Biden finally tested positive for the coronavirus.

Biden spent five days in isolation before testing negative on Wednesday, announcing how he could handle his COVID case thanks to vaccines and access to the antiviral Paxlovid.

“The bottom line: When my predecessor got COVID, he had to be taken by helicopter to Walter Reed Medical Center,” Biden said of former President Donald Trump. ‘He was seriously ill. Fortunately he recovered.’

“I got COVID, I worked from the top floor of the White House….for the five-day period,” Biden continued.

‘The difference, of course, is the vaccinations.’

The White House said Biden should test negative for COVID-19 on an antigen test before resuming public events.

He did that on Wednesday morning.

It’s unclear whether senators will abide by that same process, or simply follow CDC guidelines, allowing individuals to leave their isolation after Day No. 5.

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