Pelosi and the Squad brace for a showdown

THE VIEW FROM PELOSI-LAND: The speaker doesn’t have a choice but to hold the BIF vote Thursday. Both because she promised moderates and because highway and transit programs expire Thursday. (Progressives are skeptical of the need to act on transportation programs by that deadline.)

THE VIEW FROM PROGRESSIVES: They were tricked. Progressives keep referring to the “original deal”: that infrastructure would move only if the party delivered on their other priorities, from affordable housing to climate to free community college. (Even if moderates never made this vow, Democratic leaders certainly gave the impression it was their position.)…

WHAT DO PROGRESSIVES ACTUALLY WANT? Publicly, they say they need a Senate vote on reconciliation in order to back BIF. But progressives are also signaling they might accept something short of that: a framework with a top-line number and ironclad commitment to back key provisions they like.

The problem: Talks with Manchin and Sen. KYRSTEN SINEMA (D-Ariz.) have barely begun. “What’s holding everything up are a few senators who aren’t providing us with any clarity as to where they ultimately will land,” said House Democratic Caucus Chair HAKEEM JEFFRIES (D-N.Y.).