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March 16, 2021 3:30 PM, EDT

McConnell Rules Out GOP Support for Tax Hikes to Pay for Infrastructure

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell leaves his Capitol Hill office in Washington on March 15. (Samuel Corum/Bloomberg News)Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell leaves his Capitol Hill office in Washington on March 15. (Samuel Corum/Bloomberg News)

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Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said there was no chance that Republicans would back any tax increases to pay for President Joe Biden’s infrastructure plan, leaving Democrats to try to force through a package on their own.

“I don’t think there’s going to be any enthusiasm on our side for a tax increase,” the Kentucky Republican said.

He predicted Democrats would have to employ the same budgetary maneuver, known as reconciliation, that they used to pass Biden’s $1.9 trillion stimulus package with a simple majority vote. He said he expected a massive package with infrastructure would be a “Trojan horse” that also includes tax hikes and other Democratic priorities.

RELATED: Biden Eyes Major Tax Hike to Fund Next Economic Plan, Including Infrastructure

Democrats haven’t ruled out using reconciliation for the infrastructure plan. That would let them pass a bill without Republican support in the Senate, but would limit it to provisions that affect revenue or spending.

It’s been decades since Congress passed a significant bipartisan tax increase. The gasoline tax, which pays for highways, hasn’t been increased since 1993.

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