Top Biden aide says Senate control "hugely consequential" for agenda

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Washington — Anita Dunn, a elder advisor to President Biden, said Sunday that Democrats' triumph successful the conflict for power of the Senate successful the midterm elections is "hugely consequential" for the occurrence of Mr. Biden's docket successful his adjacent 2 years successful office.

"He believes that astatine the extremity of the day, determination are going to beryllium things that Republicans and Democrats tin enactment connected unneurotic arsenic they did implicit the past 2 years," Dunn said successful an interrogation with "Face the Nation," referring to the president. "Control of the Senate is hugely consequential some for judiciary nominations and appointments, the astir divers radical of judicial nominations ever nether the archetypal 2 years of President Biden, but besides for controlling the docket successful the U.S. Senate, and that means continued advancement for the moving families, mediate people of this country."

Transcript: Anita Dunn connected "Face the Nation"

While Republicans are successful presumption to triumph a bulk of House seats with a fistful of races inactive unresolved, their bulk is apt to beryllium narrow. CBS News estimates Democrats clasp a minimum of 210 seats, portion the GOP holds astatine slightest 214, 4 seats abbreviated of the 218 needed for a majority. 

In the Senate, however, Democrats were capable to support their power of the precocious enclosure with Nevada Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto's projected victory implicit Republican challenger Adam Laxalt. Her projected triumph gives Democrats 50 seats successful the adjacent Congress, with Vice President Kamala Harris casting tie-breaking votes if needed. Democrats could widen their bulk if Democratic incumbent Sen. Raphael Warnock defeats Republican Herschel Walker successful adjacent month's runoff election for the Senate successful Georgia.

Confronting the apt anticipation of a divided Congress travel January, Mr. Biden told reporters Wednesday that helium is acceptable to enactment with Republicans, and Dunn echoed that the White House believes Americans bash not privation partisan gridlock.

"He's going to scope retired his manus to enactment with the Republicans, and the question is whether they volition scope retired their manus to his," she said. "Given these constrictive majorities, evidently the Senate, Democrats volition control. The House is inactive up successful the air. Voters successful this state are going to expect their leaders to enactment together."

But a Republican-led House is besides poised to motorboat galore investigations into the Biden administration, and GOP lawmakers person previewed probes targeting Hunter Biden, Mr. Biden's son, implicit his concern dealings; Dr. Anthony Fauci, related to the origins of the COVID-19 pandemic; and Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas for his handling of borderline security.

Dunn said Republicans discussing these investigations and the imaginable impeachment of Mr. Biden oregon immoderate of his Cabinet secretaries person not hidden the governmental motivations down their efforts.

"The White House has and volition proceed to comply with just and morganatic oversight due to the fact that we are a White House that respects norms and the regularisation of law," she said. "But I deliberation that the American radical didn't ballot for Congress being utilized to behaviour governmental vendettas implicit the adjacent 2 years. They voted for moving unneurotic to marque advancement connected the issues they attraction about. The president is going to beryllium focused connected the priorities of the American people."

Dunn continued: "We would anticipation that the Republicans who've conscionable suffered a important decision successful presumption of some their expectations and what historically midterm elections thin to do, would besides perceive to the American people, absorption connected the priorities of the American people."

Lawmakers volition instrumentality to Washington to resume their enactment this week, and Dunn said "priority fig one" for the Biden medication during the lame-duck league is passing a backing measure to support national agencies operating. Congress approved a stopgap measure successful precocious September that maintained existent backing levels done Dec. 16.

Other priorities see further assistance to assistance Ukraine proceed to combat backmost against Russia's aggression and exigency assistance to assistance Florida and Puerto Rico rebuild aft caller hurricanes, she added.

"It's going to instrumentality a small portion inactive for lame-duck priorities to truly beryllium set, fixed the uncertainty astir the outcomes of the elections still," Dunn said. "Last Sunday, erstwhile you were sitting successful your seat and you had guests on, I don't deliberation anybody would person predicted that we inactive would not cognize who would power the United States House of Representatives the pursuing Sunday."