Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., argued during an exclusive interview with “Sunday Morning Futures” that the price tag of the massive spending bill will be “much higher” than what Democrats are admitting “at a time that we just can’t afford it.”
Barrasso made the comments two days after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said that the sweeping, multi trillion-dollar spending bill that Democrats are aiming to pass without any Republican support should also tackle immigration reform.
“I do believe that immigration should be in the reconciliation, some piece of that, in the reconciliation,” Pelosi told reporters on Friday during a press conference with House Democratic leadership. “We know we have a very good case for this to be included.”
Democrats are pushing to include a pathway to citizenship for so-called Dreamer immigrants who were brought to the U.S. as children and are protected from deportation under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, as well as Temporary Protected Status (TPS) holders, essential workers and farmworkers.
The provisions would be part of a roughly $3.5 trillion bill that Democrats are still in the process of negotiating. While details of the legislation are still unclear, it’s widely expected to invest billions in an array of planned health, education, environment and social programs as Democrats seek to use the procedural tool known as budget reconciliation to bypass a 60-vote filibuster by Republicans in the Senate.
The measure would be paid for by higher taxes on wealthy Americans and corporations.
On Sunday, Barrasso blasted the “liberal policies,” including amnesty for illegal immigrants, and said he is concerned about “this massive spending bill,” which he called “a liberal wish list.”
“It is the largest spending bill in the history of the United States,” he said, warning that “if this passes, people are going to suffer significantly.”
He pointed out that people are already paying more for things like housing and gas, noting that “spending on top of the $6 trillion already spent in coronavirus relief” will do even more financial damage.
The Labor Department said last month that U.S. consumer prices rose in June at the fastest pace since August 2008.
According to the department, the consumer price index rose 0.9% in June, faster than the 0.6% increase in May. Analysts surveyed by Refinitiv were expecting a 0.5% gain.
Used car prices spiked 10.5% in June, accounting for more than one-third of the increase. Additionally, energy prices climbed 1.5% month over month and food prices rose 0.8%.
The Labor Department also said that prices rose 5.4% year over year with prices trending higher every month this year. Analysts surveyed by Refinitiv were expecting prices to rise 4.9% annually.
The annual data has a “base effects” skew due to the decline in prices that occurred at the start of the coronavirus pandemic.
On Sunday, Barrasso pointed to Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer’s warning that Democrats may work into August in order to pass both a bipartisan infrastructure package and the separate reconciliation bill that would dramatically expand the government-funded safety net.
He then told host Maria Bartiromo on Sunday that he’s “willing to stay in Washington until hell freezes over if I can stop these bad things from happening in our country.”
Barrasso stressed that handcuffing the infrastructure bill with the “spending monstrosity” is “reckless tax and spending.”
He slammed Pelosi for reportedly saying the House of Representatives won’t vote on the bipartisan infrastructure package until the Senate passes the separate $3.5 trillion package.
“This wasn’t a negotiation with Nancy Pelosi,” Barrasso told Bartiromo. “This was a hijacking and this would be terrible for the country [and] for the economy.”
“She’s not just a hijacker, she is also an arsonist because this is putting additional jet fuel on the flames of inflation,” he went on to say.
He added that “the people who are going to suffer under this is people living under a fixed income, they are seniors, people getting by paycheck-to-paycheck.”
“All Americans are going to pay for this through inflation [and] through taxes,” Barrasso stressed.
A spokesperson for Pelosi did not immediately respond to Fox News’ request for comment.
A White House spokesperson did not immediately respond to Fox News’ request for comment.
FOX Business’ Jonathan Garber and Megan Henney contributed to this report.