By David Morgan, Susan Cornwell and Jeff Mason
WASHINGTON, Oct 1 (Reuters) – President Joe Biden on Friday urged fellow Democrats in Congress to overcome divisions that threaten his agenda and pass laws to strengthen programs for safety, fighting climate change and rebuilding roads and bridges of the country.
A visit by Biden to the Capitol capped a tumultuous week in which lawmakers narrowly avoided a partial government shutdown and postponed the vote in the House of Representatives on a $ 1 trillion infrastructure bill, which has already been approved by the Senate.
Democrats again disagreed on the size of a multi-trillion-dollar supplemental bill that would fund health, education and climate measures.
The president acknowledged in a closed-door meeting that Democrats currently do not have enough votes to pass the two massive spending bills that have divided moderates and progressives, lawmakers said.
“It doesn’t matter if it’s in six minutes, six days or six weeks. We’re going to get it,” Biden told reporters after the meeting.
Members of the party’s progressive wing have vowed to block the $ 1 trillion infrastructure bill until they can be sure that moderates will not derail the larger social spending and climate change bill.
The moderates say the social bill is too expensive.
American presidents rarely visit the Capitol, preferring to summon lawmakers to the White House for debate. Democrats said they hoped Biden’s visit could help renew momentum.