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Chamber of Commerce's Support for Biden Angers Republicans

Chamber of Commerce's Support for Biden Angers Republicans
This Aug. 4, 2009, file photo shows the United States Chamber of Commerce building in Washington. (Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP Photo)

By    |   Friday, 12 February 2021 08:56 AM

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is angering Republicans by backing some of President Joe Biden's key proposals, including the $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill and rejoining the Paris climate agreement, and supporting the appointment of Neera Tanden for Office of Management and Budget director, Politico reports.

The business-focused trade group that typically supported Republicans in the past is now having an identity crisis, with Democrats pursuing policies many of its members do not support and members of the GOP feeling abandoned.

"Do they really care about the bottom line of companies and small businesses and growth, or do they care more about social justice?" Rep. Jason Smith, R-Mo., asked of the Chamber in an interview, Politico reports. Smith publicly criticized the group's backing of Tanden, the former leader of the liberal Center of American Progress.

However, the Chamber says it will continue to work with the Biden administration on areas of agreement and fight it on issues where there is disagreement, just as it did with the Trump administration. 

For example, the group criticized Biden's decision to cancel the Keystone XL pipeline and stop new oil and gas leases on federal lands and waters for 60 days. On the issue of a minimum wage hike, the Chamber's next CEO Suzanne Clark told CNBC's "Squawk Box" that although "$15 doesn't seem like the right number, it's possible the minimum wage needs to be increased."

"Some people may have assumed that somehow the Chamber was an arm of a political party. They were wrong in that assumption," Neil Bradley, the Chamber's executive vice president and chief policy officer, said, according to Politico.

Last year, the Chamber backed 32 House Democrats before the November election. Its outgoing CEO, Thomas Donohue, also recently criticized former President Donald Trump for his actions surrounding the Jan. 6 Capitol riot and did not try to dissuade Congress from pursuing impeachment, angering some Republicans.

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Politics
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is angering Republicans by backing some of President Joe Biden's key proposals, including the $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill and rejoining the Paris climate agreement, and supporting the appointment...
chamber of commerce, biden, republicans, chamber
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2021-56-12
Friday, 12 February 2021 08:56 AM
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