Senior Democrats in the US Congress were at odds on Wednesday over a proposal to tax billionaires' assets to help pay for President Joe Biden's social and climate-change agenda, leaving it unclear if the idea had enough support to become law.
The Senate's top tax writer, Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden, unveiled the idea early on Wednesday, but by afternoon his House of Representatives counterpart, Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal, said the idea appeared to be too complex to succeed.
Biden's Democrats are struggling to reach consensus on the scope of a pair of bills worth about $3 trillion to rebuild the nation's infrastructure, boost social spending and fight climate change. With the narrowest of margins in Congress, and unified Republican opposition, they need near 100% agreement within the caucus to pass anything.
Biden and Democratic congressional leaders have been scaling back their ambitions in order to keep skeptical centrists on board. Several media outlets reported that they dropped a provision on Wednesday that would have provided up to 12 weeks of paid family leave.