Democrats Hope Bipartisanship Will Smooth Passage of Policy Agenda: Kiplinger Economic Forecasts

Senate Dems hope bipartisanship will prevail on some hot-button issues, like AI and lowering insulin costs.

Panoramic image of the Capitol of the United States in morning light.
(Image credit: Getty)

With little bipartisan agreement in Congress, it's hard to know what legislation, if any, stands a chance at passage. To help you understand what is going on and what we expect to happen in the future, our highly-experienced Kiplinger Letter team will keep you abreast of the latest developments and forecasts (Get a free issue of The Kiplinger Letter or subscribe). You'll get all the latest news first by subscribing, but we will publish many (but not all) of the forecasts a few days afterward online. Here’s the latest...

Lawmakers’ top priority remains keeping the federal government funded. But Senate Democrats are also hoping to fulfill more of their policy agenda, including at least two legislative proposals with potential bipartisan backing. (Excluding must-pass bills, such as the National Defense Authorization Act, which sets Dept. of Defense policy and spending levels for the coming year) 

The issue with the best chance for a breakthrough this summer is AI (or artificial intelligence). Driven in part by a recent Dept. of Defense briefing on the technology’s implications for national security, senators are mulling ways to effectively regulate AI. As always, they agree more in principle than on specifics. 

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Next up, legislation to lower the cost of insulin and other prescription drugs, as well as address the ongoing fentanyl crisis, which has hit both red and blue states. 

Finally, they will take a crack at other long-gestating pieces of legislation that have evaded passage so far, including rail safety and energy permitting reforms. 

It’s possible that few or none of these bills will reach the president’s desk. Even bipartisan agreement in the Senate does not guarantee passage in the House, where the Republican majority is less amenable to compromise with the Democrats. 

But Democrats are still hoping for a political boost, betting that voters will give them at least some credit for taking steps to address broadly popular issues. They will also continue to confirm President Biden’s judicial nominees.

This forecast first appeared in The Kiplinger Letter, which has been running since 1923 and is a collection of concise weekly forecasts on business and economic trends, as well as what to expect from Washington, to help you understand what’s coming up to make the most of your investments and your money. Subscribe to The Kiplinger Letter.

Sean Lengell
Associate Editor, The Kiplinger Letter

Sean Lengell covers Congress and government policy for The Kiplinger Letter. Before joining Kiplinger in January 2017 he served as a congressional reporter for eight years with the Washington Examiner and the Washington Times. He previously covered local news for the Tampa (Fla.) Tribune. A native of northern Illinois who spent much of his youth in St. Petersburg, Fla., he holds a bachelor's degree in English from Marquette University.