Build Back Better just went bust.
Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia, who had cautioned for months that he was not in favor of the trillions of dollars President Joe Biden and congressional Democrats hoped to spend, ended any hope of a bill passing with an announcement on Sunday.
“I cannot vote to continue with this piece of legislation, I just can’t. I tried everything humanly possible, I can’t get there,” Manchin said during an appearance of “Fox News Sunday.”
“You’re done — this is a no,” replied acting host Bret Baier, according to The Hill.
“This is a no, on this legislation,” Manchin replied.
“I have tried everything I know to do,” he said, and with this statement, he closed the door on Democratic hopes that he might be persuaded to change his mind.
— Clay Travis (@ClayTravis) December 19, 2021
Manchin had been involved in lengthy talks with the White House and Democratic leaders of both houses of Congress, but in the end he said he could not be swayed. Manchin was a critical piece of the puzzle because under the legislative strategy Democrats relied upon to pass the measure without any Republican votes, all 50 Democratic senators had to fall in line. Without Manchin’s vote, the measure cannot pass.
“I’ve done everything humanly possible,” Manchin said, according to Fox News.
The massive federal debt, inflation and the priority of fighting COVID-19 were among the reasons Manchin listed for his final position.
“When you have these things coming at you the way they are right now, I’ve always said this, Bret, if I can’t go home to the people of West Virginia, I can’t vote for it,” he said, The Hill reported.
Manchin’s stand drew a fierce response on Twitter.
Nothing, which is why it was a mistake to yield so much power to Manchin. Biden should’ve been using his bully pulpit as president & engaging in relentless campaign to make Manchin’s position untenable. He should be signing executive orders everywhere possible. He’s not a fighter https://t.co/oD7838JqFd
— Bree Newsome Bass (@BreeNewsome) December 19, 2021
A lot to process on the Manchin news but, from a substantive standpoint, it's just objectively devastating for the planet. The last best chance at climate change legislation is gone
— Sam Stein (@samstein) December 19, 2021
The Senate adjourned for 2021 at 4 a.m. this morning, officially ending any hope of passing Build Back Better or voting rights this year. Biden's agenda is now at the mercy of the midterm election year, thanks mainly to @Sen_JoeManchin.
— Robert Reich (@RBReich) December 18, 2021
Manchin said that President Joe Biden, who has publicly said that he expected Manchin to support the bill in the end, will not be surprised.
“He knows that I’ve had concerns and the problems I’ve had,” he said, according to The Hill. “The thing we should all be directing our attention towards is the variant of COVID we have coming back at us in so many different aspects and different ways. It’s affecting our lives again.”
Manchin also stated inflation could “really harm a lot of Americans.”
“So, I think that’s where our attention needs to be directed toward immediately,” he explained.
On Saturday, the Senate left Washington for its recess without having voted on the bill, which would have funded an array of priorities for the progressive faction of the Democratic Party, according to Politico.
During an appearance on CNN, Independent Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont castigated Manchin and said Democrats should have a floor vote to make Manchin take a public stand, according to The Washington Post.
“Look, we’ve been dealing with Mr. Manchin for month after month after month. 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,” Sanders said.
Via The Western Journal.