Sen. Capito Says ‘Indications’ Of Compromise On Infrastructure Bill

Sen. Capito Says 'Indications' Of Compromise On Infrastructure Bill shelley moore capitol listens at her seat with her nameplate in front Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., listens during the confirmation hearing for Administrator of the EPA Michael Regan on Feb. 3, 2021. (Brandon Bell-Pool/Getty Images)

Sunday, 25 April 2021 11:57 AM

Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W. Va., said there are “indications” of a compromise on a massive infrastructure bill, including incorporating unused COVID-19 funds to pay for it.

In an interview on CNN’s “State of the Union,” Capito said the Senate has “really narrowed” the scope of a $2 trillion measure proposed by President Joe Biden and passed by the Democrat-controlled House.

“We really narrowed the focus on infrastructure to really look at physical infrastructure, roads, bridges, rail, airports, water systems,” she said. “The president's bill, the $2.2 trillion goes far afield from that.”

She added the starting point in the discussion “an apples to apple comparison of the physical structure, the core infrastructure of his plan with what matches up with what [Republicans] put forward.”

“The president asked for our plan, and we thought it was really important to put a marker in to show what we thought was important, what's going to be a job creating infrastructure plan, and how much it would be,” she said, adding: “All indications are it's time to really start putting the pencils to the paper.”

According to Capito, there are ways to fund the work without raising taxes — including putting unused “COVID dollars that have already been appropriated and move that towards infrastructure.”

“Let our cities and towns use that money for roads and bridges,” she said. “We've got some really good ideas that don't incorporate raising any taxes, but simply looks at the users and the consumers of infrastructure and says let's pay with this with dollars that we generate from those entities.

Capito also weighed in on police reform in the wake of fired Minneapolis officer Derek Chauvin’s conviction in the murder of George Floyd — saying she supports GOP South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott’s proposal for qualified immunity that would allow people to sue police departments but not individual officers.

“I definitely support Sen. Scott's efforts,” she said, adding reform is “probably past due.”

“I think other things that we have in the Justice Act would eliminate choke holds, it makes the registry so that you're not passing bad cop to bad cop. There's a lot of really good things that I think are going to be the core of any kind of justice bill that we pass,” she said.

She also asserted she doesn’t agree with fellow GOP Sen. Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, who opposes pushing for everyone to get a COVID-19 vaccine.

“I think we ought to move forward,” she insisted. “West Virginia has done a great job in this area but we're starting to find that we have more vaccine than we do have people who are willing to step forward. I'm trying to do whatever I can to say it's safe, it's reliable, and it's really about you and your neighbor and that's what we need.”

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