The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is organizing an economy-wide coalition to fight Democrats' $3.5 trillion budget plan, which the slim Senate majority plans to pass without Republican support via reconciliation, The Washington Post reports.
The Chamber is reportedly talking with groups like the National Association of Manufacturers, whose board includes executives from firms such as Dow Inc., Exxon, and Johnson & Johnson. Per the Post, the coalition's strategy could consist of traditional Capitol Hill lobbying alongside advertising campaigns against Democratic lawmakers, particularly those who represent more centrist constituencies and could prove vulnerable electorally. The Chamber has already released a series of ads that both praised nine moderate House Democrats who threatened to block a key procedural vote on the budget earlier this month unless they struck a deal to set a deadline for a vote on the bipartisan infrastructure bill and emphasized the internal squabbles within the Democratic Party that led to the standoff.
Senate Democrats can't afford to lose any votes in the 50-50 upper chamber, so the task of passing the budget isn't a sure thing even without the expected blitz from corporate lobbyists who are aiming to prevent unity within the party. "We're doing it in every way you can imagine," Aric Newhouse, the senior vice president for policy at the National Association of Manufacturers, told the Post, referring to the group's lobbying tactics. Read more at The Washington Post.