WASHINGTON (Fwrd Axis) — Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va) said Sunday morning that he will not vote for President Joe Biden’s Build Back Better Act, killing Democrats’ hopes of potentially passing the $2 trillion legislation.
Speaking to Bret Baier on “Fox News Sunday”, Manchin said he tried “everything humanly possible” to try to get the deal done.
“I’ve always said this, Bret, if I can’t go home and explain it to the people of West Virginia, I can’t vote for and I cannot vote to continue with this piece of legislation. I just can’t,” he said.
“This is a no on this legislation,” Manchin added. “I’ve tried everything humanly possible. I can’t get there.”
Prior to speaking on Fox News, Manchin made his position clear to the White House and to Democratic leadership, a person familiar with the conversation said.
Despite that, the White House was seemingly press secretary Jen Psaki issued a lengthy and fiery statement in response.
“On Tuesday of this week, Senator Manchin came to the White House and submitted—to the President, in person, directly—a written outline for a Build Back Better bill that was the same size and scope as the President’s framework, and covered many of the same priorities,” Psaki said. “If his comments on FOX and written statement indicate an end to that effort, they represent a sudden and inexplicable reversal in his position, and a breach of his commitments to the President and the Senator’s colleagues in the House and Senate.”
Manchin’s decision will likely kill the $1.75 trillion social spending package, which included the biggest provisions on climate change. The Senate is split down the middle at 50-50 with Vice President Kamala Harris breaking the tie in favor of the Democrats.
FWRD AXIS News previously reported that talks between Manchin and Biden were going “very poorly” and they were “far apart” on the proposal.
The President’s bill would free up billions of dollars to help millions of families with children in an extension of the child tax credit and give over $500 billion for tax breaks and spending on combating the threat of climate change.
The bill also includes child care funding, universal pre-K, an extension of Affordable Care Act subsidies and Medicare hearing benefits.
Failure to pass the bill would have devastating consequences. The child tax credit that sees parents get $300 a month will expire at the end of the year unless Congress extends it and it could also affect the midterms, which Democrats are worried will see them lose control of Congress.
“We’ve been dealing with Mr. Manchin for month after month after month,” Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) said on CNN Sunday. “But if he doesn’t have the courage to do the right thing for the working families of West Virginia and America, let him vote no, in front of the whole world.”
Progressive Democrats have reportedly been frustrated with Biden‘s first year in office, feeling his first year in office was not as transformative for Democrats as they had hoped.
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) called out Democrats in a series of tweets for moving the infrastructure bill before the Build Back Better Act.
“When a handful of us in the House warned this would happen if Dem leaders gave Manchin everything he wanted 1st by moving BIF before BBB instead of passing together, many ridiculed our position,” she said. “Maybe they’ll believe us next time. Or maybe people will just keep calling us naïve.”