Democrats on Capitol Hill are incensed the West Virginia senator refused to cast a key vote for Joe Biden’s multi-trillion-dollar “Build Back Better” plan, which is now dead on Capitol Hill after months of D.C.-style threats, promises, and backroom negotiations.
The bill required votes from Manchin and from independent-minded Sen. Krysten Sinema to reach the president’s desk.
Republicans likened “Build Back Better” to a big-government wish list that would make Karl Marx proud for its promises to fix everything from poverty to climate change at a true cost of approximately $4.8 trillion, which was projected to balloon the nation’s deficit to an estimated $2.8 trillion over 10 years.
President Biden and his party, however, promised with a straight face the wild spending plan was “fully paid for” and would reduce the deficit while righting many wrongs.
Build Back Better is the "most the most significant piece of legislation ever passed in the world," Sen. Bernie Sanders said weeks ago.
“Build Back Better is about addressing the unprecedented challenges we are facing right now: a climate catastrophe, working families struggling to make ends meet, addressing inflation and giving everyday Americans a shot at prosperity,” Rep. Veronica Escobar, a Democrat from Texas, said of the bill.
Democrats and far-left activists wooed, begged and threatened Machin for months to get behind “Build Back Better” but the embattled senator announced a “no” vote in mid-December that ended that pressure campaign against him and Sen. Sinema.
After months of pushing Build Back Better, and warning that America faced a bleak future without it, Democrats easily pivoted to a new rallying cry: passing "voting rights" legislation to save "democracy" from the GOP.
Machin holding 'enormous power'
Once that “no” vote was cast by Sen. Manchin, and it was clear Democrats had failed, Republicans made their move.
“Obviously we would love to have him on our team,” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell told the media. “I think he’d be more comfortable.”
Washington Times columnist Robert Knight tells American Family News he remains skeptical Manchin will switch parties in the coming year.
“Right now [Manchin] has enormous power as the swing vote under the Democrats,” Knight observes. “I imagine he sees that as being more powerful than as being one more Republican senator.”
Another issue with Manchin switching parties, Knight says, is that he would be changing the “D” to an “R” but his political views would not change.
“When Democrats who are somewhat conservative leave their party, and join the Republican Party, they don't leave behind all their liberal views,” Knight says. “So I'm not sure Joe Manchin can be a conservative Republican."