The face of West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin is almost certainly haunting Joe Biden’s dreams these days. Manchin has become the Democrats’ ghost in the machine, disrupting and destroying their plans to spend America into penury and transform society into something strangely alien to most Americans’ idea of freedom.
Manchin singlehandedly stopped the Democrats from imposing a $15-an-hour wage on American businesses. It didn’t matter that much since most state governments jacked up wages to $15, which forced any business that could to follow suit. But it was a sign that Manchin, hardly anyone’s idea of a rebel, was not going to roll over for the radicals.
He has now enraged them even more by putting up his hand and yelling “stop” over the Democrats’ plan to spend $3.5 trillion on everything from climate change to Medicare expansion to assuring “equity” and “ending racism as we know it”—if you can believe in Democratic Party fairy tales.
Since Joe Biden needs all 50 Democrats to vote for the package so that it can be passed using the reconciliation process, Manchin’s reluctance to break the bank for the radicals has liberals calling for his ouster from the party.
Manchin’s objections to the bill are brutally logical and ridiculously simple: “I have always said if I can’t explain it, I can’t vote for it, and I can’t explain why my Democratic colleagues are rushing to spend $3.5 trillion,” Manchin wrote in an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal.
Would that all lawmakers had that attitude toward informing their constituents.
Manchin has stated categorically: “I, for one, won’t support a $3.5 trillion bill, or anywhere near that level of additional spending, without greater clarity about why Congress chooses to ignore the serious effects inflation and debt have on existing government programs.”
An overheating economy has imposed a costly “inflation tax” on every middle- and working-class American. At $28.7 trillion and growing, the nation’s debt has reached record levels. Over the past 18 months, we’ve spent more than $5 trillion responding to the coronavirus pandemic. Now Democratic congressional leaders propose to pass the largest single spending bill in history with no regard to rising inflation, crippling debt or the inevitability of future crises. Ignoring the fiscal consequences of our policy choices will create a disastrous future for the next generation of Americans.
Those who believe such concerns are overstated should ask themselves: What do we do if the pandemic gets worse under the next viral mutation? What do we do if there is a financial crisis like the one that led to the Great Recession? What if we face a terrorist attack or major international conflict? How will America respond to such crises if we needlessly spend trillions of dollars today?
Manchin recommended that the party “pause” and see what develops in the coming weeks and months on inflation, the pandemic, and other unknown factors. But he made it clear that in these perilous times, greater thought must go into legislating.
A pause is warranted because it will provide more clarity on the trajectory of the pandemic, and it will allow us to determine whether inflation is transitory or not. While some have suggested this reconciliation legislation must be passed now, I believe that making budgetary decisions under artificial political deadlines never leads to good policy or sound decisions.
The senator clearly has too much common sense for the radicals.
Another reason to pause: We must allow for a complete reporting and analysis of the implications a multitrillion-dollar bill will have for this generation and the next. Such a strategic pause will allow every member of Congress to use the transparent committee process to debate: What should we fund, and what can we simply not afford?
Meanwhile, the radicals say we can’t wait! We must act now or we’re doomed, doomed I say!
Pause on finally delivering child care, paid leave, education, health care, affordable housing, climate action, and dental, vision, and hearing to millions of families across America?
Absolutely not. https://t.co/9Ec91f4Ee9
— Rep. Pramila Jayapal (@RepJayapal) September 2, 2021
You can’t argue with a brain-dead automaton.
Manchin is very likely to be kicked out of the party as Republican misfits like Reps. Cheney and Kinzinger are already headed out the door. This is not the day and age to buck the wishes of a majority in either party.
In partisan war, there’s no room for thoughtful legislators.