Mark Pocan urges Biden to use executive actions to avoid ‘obstructionism’ on Capitol Hill


Rep. Mark Pocan, co-chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, said Thursday presumptive Presidential-elect Joesph R. Biden will need to employ strong executive authority to overcome gains made by Republicans in Congress.

“We have to encourage Joe Biden and Kamala Harris to use executive orders and rule changes aggressively early in many areas,” Mr. Pocan, Wisconsin Democrat, said at a conference hosted by the Progressive Caucus Action Fund. “That is going to be our single best way to be able to get around any obstructionism or tight vote margins.”

Top progressive leaders on Capitol Hill, including Mr. Pocan and fellow CPC co-chair Rep. Pramila Jayapal of Washington, have touted the support from far-left groups and movements in boosting Mr. Biden’s bid for the White House.

However, the Democratic party faced disappointment in down-ballot races election night when Senate Republicans held onto several vulnerable seats and the GOP chipped away at House Democrats’ majority.

The election results have stirred up a conversation amongst rank-and-file Democrats, with more moderate members blaming those further left for letting their controversial messaging on movements, like ‘Defund the Police,’ define key moments of their overall campaign.

Mr. Pocan specifically criticized Sen. Joe Manchin for mocking the ‘Defund the Police’ movement and other liberal demands, like ending the filibuster, arguing that there was “absolutely structural barriers” for their movement’s priorities.

The Wisconsin Democrat also said he’s in favor of pushing Democratic leadership in the House to reign in some of the minority tools, such as a motion to recommit, to curtail Republicans’ ability to leverage a thin majority.

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