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Bustos bullish on $1.75 trillion Build Back Better compromise package's chances

Tim Shelley

Democrats on Capitol Hill have wrangled internally — and sometimes openly—- for months over how much money to allocate toward the president's Build Back Better agenda.

U.S. Rep. Cheri Bustos, D-Moline, says she's confident the president's pared-back social infrastructure package finally has the votes it needs to make it to the Resolute Desk.

"When it's all said and done, we're going to get the job done. And I think it's a matter of days," Bustos said.

She said while moderate Democrats balked over the plan's initial $3.5 trillion price tag, people throughout the party share the same basic values, like fighting climate change and reducing childhood poverty.

"The compromise amount is now $1.75 trillion. While that may sound...it's still a huge amount, and it still will be transformational," she said.

One tenet not likely to make it into the final package: allowing Medicare to negotiate drug prices. Bustos said select drugs may still be included, however.

"Insulin is one of those where we're going to be able to bring the prices down, and make sure Medicaid and Medicare aren't paying more than they should, and families aren't paying more than we should," said Bustos, adding Democrats may bring the final bill to a vote as soon as this week.

Tim is the News Director at WCBU Peoria Public Radio.