Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-Wyckoff) joined a cross-ideological coalition of House Democrats today to call for the Senate to pass robust climate protections through the Build Back Better Act (BBB), which has stalled in the upper chamber after passing the House last year.
“There is no time to delay,” Gottheimer said. “For New Jersey, for our planet, we must take action to tackle climate change now, to make sure that our best days will always be ahead of us.”
When the two bills were wending their way through the House last year, Gottheimer made headlines for leading a small caucus of renegade moderate Democrats who insisted that the Bipartisan Infrastructure Bill be passed through the House without guaranteed action on BBB; House Democratic leadership had wanted the two bills to be paired.
Both bills eventually passed the House, but while the infrastructure bill had already been passed by the Senate and later became law, BBB has foundered against Senators Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) in the Senate.
Today’s event appeared to be designed to emphasize that House Democrats across the ideological spectrum remain committed to BBB’s success, something which progressive Rep. Jahana Hayes (D-CT) made note of.
“The fact that we have the whole spectrum, from the New Dems to the progressives, on a call agreeing about the same thing … really speaks to the urgency of this matter,” Hayes said.
Also on the call was Rep. Katie Porter (D-CA), a prominent swing-district progressive, and more moderate Reps. Suzan DelBene (D-WA) and Abigail Spanberger (D-VA).
Separately today, Gottheimer unveiled new bipartisan legislation aimed at bolstering the Strategic National Stockpile and preventing shortages of medical materials in future crises.
“It was completely shocking to discover at the beginning of the pandemic – when New Jersey was hit so hard and our hospitals were in desperate need of masks and ventilators – that we had no way of knowing the quantity, location, or production of these supplies,” he said in a statement on the bill. “This critical legislation will ensure that in future crises, we are much better prepared.”