The West Virginia senator was accused of violating pledges made to President Joe Biden in the most vehemently criticizing statement.
Psaki stated that Manchin’s statements were inconsistent with his discussions with the president, White House staff, and his public utterances. His comments are a sudden and unexplainable change in his position and a breach to his commitments to both the president and his senators colleagues in Congress and the Senate.
Psaki stated that Manchin had just five days before presented a proposal to Biden personally.
Although the framework did not address key priorities, it was acceptable and could lead to a compromise, she stated.
The apparent collapse in legislation will only serve to deepen the ideological divides within Democratic Party between moderates or progressives. This would raise questions about whether Democrats will be able join forces behind any substantive legislation before the November congressional election. It adds chaos to the mix, just as Democrats need accomplishments and a united front for the fall campaign.
Psaki stated that they will continue to talk. She said that Senator Manchin had retracted his position on Build back Better this morning. We will continue to press him to reverse his position, to honor his commitments, and to be true to his word.
Psaki said that Manchin will have to explain to families why they need to pay more insulin, why parents need more child care, and why the Child tax credit won’t be extended. The fight for Build back Better is too important to abandon. Psaki stated that we will find a way forward next year.
The bill makes huge investments in helping millions of families with young children. It includes a generous child tax credit, free preschool, and bolstering the child care aid program. The bill provides assistance to help people pay their health care costs, including new hearing benefits for Medicare beneficiaries and provisions that limit prescription drug price increases.
There are also funds for housing, job training, care for the elderly, and more that $500 billion for tax breaks. It would almost all be paid for by higher taxes on the wealthy or large corporations.
Manchin’s opposition makes it impossible to move forward. The senator from West Virginia cited several factors that weighed on the economy and the potential damage he saw from pushing through this mammoth bill. These included persistent inflation, growing debt, and the latest threat from an omicron variant.
When these things are coming at you right now, Ive always stated this… If I cant explain it to West Virginians, I cant vote.
I tried everything that was humanly possible. He said that he couldn’t do it. This legislation is a no. I have done everything I know.
Although Manchin was the main obstacle for Democrats all year in pushing the massive package through narrowly divided Congress, his declaration was an astonishing repudiation of Bidens’ and his party’s top goal. Many saw a rejection as impossible because of the possible political damage it would cause to Democrats.
I-Vt. Senator Bernie Sanders criticized Manchin’s decision to withdraw his support and urged Democratic leaders not to bring the bill to a floor and force Manchin against it.
Sanders stated that Sanders would vote no if he does not have the courage to do the right things for the West Virginian working families and America’s workers, as he said in the State of the Union.
It is not often for a member from a president’s party to deliver a fatal blow against their most important legislative initiative. Manchins decision was reminiscent of the famous thumbs-down vote by Senator John McCain, R.Ariz. that killed President Donald Trumps 2017 attempt to repeal the Obama-era healthcare law.
Jamaal Bowman (D-N.Y.), one of the progressives who are fighting for a stronger Biden bill, expressed his frustration.
Bowman, speaking by telephone on Sunday, said that there have been concerns about Joe Manchin all year. Biden’s agenda is being killed by Manchin.
More centrist lawmakers joined the fight for Biden’s bill, vowing to continue fighting.
After months of negotiations, one Democratic U.S. One Democratic U.S. Senator has now withdrawn from productive negotiations. This is unacceptable. We cannot pretend that this is the end,” stated Rep. Abigail Spanberger D-Va.
Biden acknowledged last week that negotiations over his comprehensive domestic policy package would likely continue into the new year. But, the president had insisted on Manchin’s support for a framework that the senator and the White House had agreed to for his flagship bill.
Manchin clarified that these were Bidens words on Sunday. The senator criticized fellow legislators for a bill that hasn’t shrunk even though he initially agreed to a $1.5 billion framework. He said social programs should be paid for over 10 year to win his support and not just for a few years.
For example, the cost of extending the child tax credit program for the full 10 year budget window alone would be well over $1 trillion. This would consume the majority of Biden’s bill and crowd out other important initiatives in education, health care, and child care.
Manchin said that we should be clear and prioritize our priorities.
Manchin’s claims that the bill would increase inflation and worsen deficits are generally dismissed by Democrats. Democrats say it will put money into people’s pockets to allow them to afford rising prices. And that strengthening child care and education would help people go back to work and get better jobs. It would increase productivity, and help employers fill vacant jobs. This would help keep rising prices in check.
The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office reported earlier this month that if many bills were made permanent with temporary spending increases and tax cuts, it would add $3 trillion in cost. This would double the 10-year cost of the bill to $5 trillion. Democrats have called the projections in the Republican-requested study fictitious.
Democrats point out that the CBO estimates that the legislation is almost fully paid for. CBO estimates that its tax boosts, aggressive IRS collection from higher earners, and other savings would add about $200 billion to the federal deficits over ten years. This is a small fraction of the $12 trillion CBO had previously projected.