U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) confirmed today that he will not support the Biden administration’s proposed massive spending spree known as the Build Back Better legislation.
Manchin told Bret Baier, who is one of the rotating hosts on Fox News Sunday after the abrupt departure of Chris Wallace for CNN+, that in the course of negotiations with Joe Biden, Chuck Schumer, and Nancy Pelosi and many others on Capitol Hill, he has tried “everything humanly possible” to strike a deal, but the spending plan is still not better.
“Bret, this is a mammoth piece of legislation. I had my reservations from the beginning when I heard about it five-and-half months ago. And I’ve been working diligently every day…working on this…the inflation that I was concerned about — it’s not transitory; it’s real, it’s harming every West Virginian…then you have the debt that we’re carrying at $29 trillion. You have also geopolitical unrest…You have the COVID variant, and that is wreaking havoc again…
“So when you have these things coming at you the way there are right now — I’ve always said this, if I can’t go home and explain it to the people of West Virginia, I can’t vote for it. And I cannot vote to continue with this piece of legislation. I just can’t…I can’t get there,” he told Baier.
Manchin’s vote, or lack thereof, likely means the end of the road for the bill, which is characterized as the Biden administration’s top legislative priority, in the 50-50 U.S. Senate.
"This is a no on this legislation" — On Fox News Sunday, Manchin announces he won't vote for the Build Back Better bill. Game over. pic.twitter.com/p0rCu4kl7M
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) December 19, 2021
“Manchin had previously proposed a $1.7 trillion price tag for the spending package, but he said his Democratic colleagues did not make the necessary compromises. He did note that both he and President Biden tried hard to make it work,” Fox News reported.
In a roundabout way, Manchin also told Baier that he still opposes any changes to the filibuster rule in the Senate. Eliminating the 60-vote procedurally threshold to move forward on legislation would allow the Democrats, who are narrowly but effectively in control of Congress, to jam through their far-left agenda, including so-called voting reform.
Manchin (and Democrat Sen. Krysten Sinema of Arizona, perhaps to a lesser extent), the politician standing in the way of full-blown socialism in the U.S. despite extensively chronicled intense pressure from the left, released a statement that further explained his position.
“My Democratic colleagues in Washington are determined to dramatically reshape our society in ways that leaves our country more vulnerable to the threats we face. I cannot take that risk with a staggering debt of more than $29 trillion and inflation taxes that are real and harmful to every hard-working American at the gasoline pumps, grocery stores and utility bills with no end in sight,” he declared, in part.
“The American people deserve transparency on the true cost of the Build Back Better Act. The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office determined the cost is upwards of $4.3 trillion which is more than double what the bill’s ardent supporters. They continue to camouflage the real cost of the intent behind the bill…”
Manchin also seemingly threw some shade, as it were, on the green climate activism contained in the bill. “If enacted, the bill will also risk the reliability of our electric grid and increase our dependence on foreign supply chains. The energy transition my colleagues seek is already well underway in the United States of America.”
Manchin currently chairs the Energy and Natural Resources Committee in the upper chamber and has urged Biden to reinstate the Keystone XL pipeline.
Manchin, 74, is up for re-election in 2024 in a coal-producing state that has gone red in a big way.
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