Sen. Ben Cardin (D-Md.) was overheard on a hot mic discussing a trick to keep Republicans out of infrastructure discussions with Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg.

At a Monday press conference, Cardin was fortunate enough to be recorded on a C-SPAN microphone on Monday, March 15, saying that Democrats would “most likely” have to use reconciliation to get an infrastructure bill through Congress.

Buttigieg immediately excused himself and walked away with Cardin to continue the discussion as Cardin mentioned Republicans.

Fox News said that budget reconciliation is a legislative mechanism that gained popularity when Democrats sought a way to bring their COVID-19 relief bill, the American Rescue Plan, through a Senate filibuster and to President Joe Biden. Since it helps senators stop filibusters in the Senate, there’s no need for a 60-vote threshold. According to the news, this makes a majority vote the only condition to pass whatever bill you put into a budget reconciliation bundle.

Cardin and Buttigieg’s offices did not respond to requests for comment from Fox News.

In relation to the budget reconciliation plan, Cardin claims it will be a long process and that actions from some members of the committee could be seen along with other parts of it. It will eventually be put together in the same way that the American Rescue Plan was. 

After stressing the possibility of implementing the reconciliation, Cardin mentioned Republicans in a way of saying that this is how they would be deterred from the debate: “The Republicans will be with you to a point and then…”. 


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