Manchin Urges House To Pass Infrastructure Bill First

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Centrist Democratic US Senator Joe Manchin (from the coal-producing state of West Virginia) killed a program of incentives and penalties within the bill to push fossil fuel burning utilities toward cleaner energy
Centrist Democratic US Senator Joe Manchin (from the coal-producing state of West Virginia) killed a program of incentives and penalties within the bill to push fossil fuel burning utilities toward cleaner energy

Sen. Joe Manchin, D- W. Va., is threatening to vote against President Biden’s $1.75 trillion social spending bill unless the House first votes on the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure deal.

Manchin has accused House progressives of playing a “political game,” adding “Holding this bill hostage is not going to work in getting my support for the reconciliation bill."

Manchin says he will not support the budget bill until he has a thorough understanding of the impact the bill would have on the national debt, the economy, and the American people. 

 

 

"I, for one, won't support a multi-trillion dollar bill without greater clarity about why Congress chooses to ignore the serious effects of inflation and debt that have on our economy and existing government programs," Manchin said.

Manchin has succeeded in stripping many key provisions of the bill, such as a billionaires tax, clean electricity standards, free community college, lower drug prices, paid family leave and expanding Medicare to include dental and vision. 

The bill will include expanded healthcare coverage under the ACA, lower premiums for 9 million Americans, $150 billion for affordable housing, clean energy tax credits, a 15% tax for corporations, and free pre-K.

Progressives have been determined to pass both bills together in order to assure their biggest priorities are included in the president’s economic agenda. Congressional Progressive Caucus Chair Pramila Jayapal, D-Wash., is confident Biden can get all 50 Democratic senators to support his agenda. 

Shortly after Manchin spoke, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D- Calif., responded to Manchin’s concerns, saying “Build Back Better will grow the economy without increasing inflation, because it is fully paid for.” The vote for the bipartisan bill has been postponed twice as they hope to pass the president’s agenda sometime this week.

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