Joe Biden may be old AF but he 100% knows how to play ball. That is why it is very important to understand what is coming in the next quarter of Uncle Joe’s first term in office.
As you recall, Joe Biden and Chuck Schumer recently burned 6-months of clock trying to pass Build Back Better and a voting rights bill, but they never even got their side’s offense in gear. The Democratic team was bitterly divided off the field with defectors like Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema refusing to block and tackle. And across the parliamentary line of scrimmage, Mitch McConnell lead the Republican’s with his signature stout defense.
Animals, here at SSG we were always firm that both Build Back Better and Voting Rights were dead from the start. We hope you are still betting that way.
But now that the Senate has voted down both of these initiatives, we are now entering a new stage of the game. Joe Biden will have a chance to walk away with a few points on the board if he is willing to kick a field goal on Build Back Better and Voting rights.
Let’s talk about how he can (and will) do that, and what that means for bettors.
BUILD BACK BETTER 2.0 –> The US Innovation and Competitiveness Act Pass
USICA is Chuck Schumer’s personal baby. It’s a bill that has already passed the Senate and it would basically bribe high-tech manufacturers to stay in the USA. There is no betting market on this yet but we expect to see one soon.
Watch this space.
Voting Rights –> Will the Electoral Count Act Be Amended by July 1?
The Electoral Count Act (ECA) is a law about how elections are certified but tbh, no one really knows what it says. This is one of the reasons why Donald Trump thought it was 100% fine to try to appoint new electors after the 2020 election and nullify Biden’s victory.
This move ruffled a lot of people’s feathers, which is why there is some momentum on Capitol Hill to reform the bill. The goal of ECA reformers is to clarify that American elections can’t be overturned by one person’s ego.
Check out the coalition building around an ECA reform:
The big takeaway for Joe Biden & Chuck Schumer is that they can pass an ECA fix and take credit for the win pretty much anytime they want. The stump speech writes itself here.
“Never again will a wreckless, un-Democratic man like Donald Trump have the power to attempt an insurrection…”
It’s a victory that Biden, Schumer, and Pelosi have in their Congressional piggy bank for whenever they need it.
But there is one big downside for bettors: there’s no hurry to finish this bill. That’s because:
- Passing it now is hard… lots of bruised egos remain bc the Dems got BTFO on passing their giant voting rights bill
- Therefore, Dems would worry that a narrow ECA fix will be seen as a defeat on the larger issue
- And since they can save this win for anytime they want — why not save it for a rainy day?
Let’s also widen out and see what else needs floor time between now and July, when PredictIt’s bet resolves. Urgent matters include:
- Current CR extension (must pass, February)
- Possible Ukraine aide package (February)
- Possible Russia war sanctions (February, March)
- New Supreme Court Justice to replace Breyer (Spring/Summer)
- FY2023 budget resolution (must pass, winter)
- NDAA (must pass, spring/summer)
- FY2023 appropriations bills (should pass, summer/fall)
- Biden’s slate of ambassadors (shockingly, almost none are confirmed)
- Biden’s slate of judges (suck it, Cocaine Mitch!!)
- USICA (the Build Back Better alternative)
That’s a lot.
Then, there is also the Tea Party lesson: sometimes, when a political party is obsessed with an issue in a way that has their rank-and-file completely detached from reality, there is no will to accept a compromise. I.E., zealots often snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.
This is why Republicans in the Obama Era failed to secure a “Grand Bargain” to reduce government spending, and could not even find the votes for a “skinny repeal” of Obamacre once they controlled all 3 branches of government.
Honestly, ever since the Democrats got woke, this voting rights bill has turned into their own version of a Tea Party cult. Mitch McConnell gave a pretty aggro speech that puts the partisan lunacy in perspective:
TL:DNR — without passing judgement on the underlying bill, the religious attitude that some in the Democratic Caucus have towards the voting rights issue is such that they may not be willing to accept a minor election reform like ECA. And if they are willing to accept this small prize and nothing, it’ll take a bit for their heads to cool off.
So with all of that said, I think it’s foolish to bet on ECA passing by July. Remember, when Congress is in a hurry, things take months. And when Congress is in no hurry at all… the timeline could be years.
An ECA reform will pass, but I do not want to stake my money or credibility on that happening by July.
That would a real Hail Hary.