The cheers for Democratic Senator Joe Manchin from West Virginia keep coming, but the sound is definitely coming from the right. There are only groans coming from the left. If you liked the news that Manchin appeared in a campaign ad for a Republican friend, you are going to love what the West Virginia senator is doing with the left’s energy agenda.
When the progressive band of Democrats pretty much decided to focus on their own party and work towards a filibuster, Manchin decided to rally some GOP leaders to work on energy. So a bipartisan group of lawmakers will meet this week to work on a deal to go up against the left’s climate change energy policy. This is happening just when the left believes that they only have a couple of weeks left to finish their legislative agenda before the midterm elections completely take over everyone’s agenda.
With the clock ticking, Republicans are making clear their goal to lessen the left’s resolve to pass a party-line tax and spending bill.
With political blinders on, the Democrats seem bent on passing a bill to lower prescription drug prices, reforming the tax code, and throwing billions of dollars into cutting carbon emissions.
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Ignoring the fervor, Manchin and the GOP leadership in the House keep moving along with a commitment to an energy and climate proposal that follows the rule of common sense for the American people.
When Senator Manchin was asked about the direction he is going to go, he said, “I’m keeping all options open.” After singlehandedly stopping the Democrats’ $1.7 trillion Build Back Better move, he has now met privately with Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer to talk about inflation.
Manchin didn’t mince words about his message to the Democratic leader. “I said, ‘Chuck, if you do anything, you’ve got to be serious about inflation. You’ve got to be serious about paying down the debt,’”
He went on to say, “We’ll be facing a hell of a mess on Social Security in 2026. We haven’t addressed that. There’s so many things that need to be addressed, and it’s not by spending more money.”
On energy, the progressives on the left want to put hundreds of billions of dollars into clean energy tax credits. They also are focused on possibly including a cost on emissions of methane. The focus of those committed to a bipartisan plan favor investments in advanced nuclear energy and getting more equipment to aid in capturing carbon emissions.
Manchin already has gotten more cheers from the right for tightening up the left’s plan for climate change. He stopped a national clean electricity program that would have given money to utilities all over the country for reducing emissions.
And the pessimists on the left are now indicating that their major priorities are not going to get done before November. So the thought that Manchin is making them drag their feet is excruciating to them.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) said, “It’s time to cut a deal and get it done on climate that we can put into reconciliations. And continue broader talks in multiple directions.”
There was one unnamed GOP senator who was willing to say that the whole bipartisan effort was focused on ending any momentum the Democrats had for a party-line bill. Senator Cramer said that he did not know of any explicit desire to end the left’s efforts, but he did welcome any slowdown that might be a side effect of the bipartisan effort.
It looks like it’s Manchin for the win again to keep the Democrats from getting much of anything done with a Democratic presidency and a majority in the House.