Yesterday, Rep. Cori Bush (D-MO) saw that same tape you just watched above. She was so pissed off that she issued a statement: "Joe Manchin does not get to dictate the future of our country. I do not trust his assessment of what our communities need the most. I trust the parents in my district who can’t get to their shift without childcare. I trust the scientists who have shown us what our future will look like if we fail to meaningfully address the climate crisis. I trust the patients and doctors crying out for comprehensive health coverage for every person in America. Joe Manchin's opposition to the Build Back Better Act is anti-Black, anti-child, anti-woman and anti-immigrant. Senator Manchin must support the Build Back Better Act."
She's completely right, of course-- except about two little points, one in the beginning and one at the end:
1- Joe Manchin does not get to dictate the future of our country
2- Senator Manchin must support the Build Back Better Act
Unfortunately, and as frustrating as this is, 1- Manchin does get to dictate the future of our country and 2- Manchin does not have to support Build Back Better. In fact, he has publicly stated he doesn't care or not if it passes. That puts him in an incredibly strong position politically. If he doesn't care, it's "my way or the highway."
That's why the progressives have no leverage against him-- zero. They care if it passes-- even the scraps the he and Sinema and allowing in the bill. All you hear when you talk with any of them now is, basically, "something is better than nothing." It's the progressive mantra right now.
Despite what the morons in the media say, this was never a "negotiation." It was always Manchin and Sinema deciding what they don't want and the two of them passing that along to the dummy in the White House.
Is there anything LBJ could have done differently than? I know I embedded this short Don Winslow clip a few days ago, but it's worth watching again:
Manchin's daughter makes $18 million a year and killed people who couldn't afford the arbitrary and outrageous increases in the price of insulin. Maybe LBJ would have told her father she would get some rough treatment when she was arrested and dragged into custody in an hour if Manchin didn't get on TV and talk about how important lowering the cost of drugs and adding dental care to Medicare are for his constituents back in McDowell, Clay, and Gilmer counties, the 3 counties with the lowest per capita incomes in West Virginia, all of which happen to be counties where Bernie won more votes than Trump in the 2016 primary.
McDowell Co.- $14,874
Bernie- 1,453 votes
Trump- 760 votes
Clay Co.- $16,827
Bernie- 754 votes
Trump- 568 votes
Gilmer Co.- $17,115
Bernie- 643 votes
Trump- 433 votes
Joe Manchin, working class hero!
Senate Majority Leader, co-president Joe Manchin is now demanding that the House immediately take up the shitty all-conservative inadequate hard infrastructure bill (which isn't even paid for, the tway the social spending bill is). Progressives I've been talking with are ready to back down and surrender. I blame the mother-fuckers in the media for this, for always referring to conservatives like him and Sinema as "moderates," an extremely well-liked term that does not describe either of them. The word "conservative" is not a positive term and it's what every reporter and columnist should have been labelling-- accurately labelling-- Manchin and Sinema for years.
"Joe Manchin," said Jason Call after the press conference, "represents the elitism and cynicism of the entire corporate owned political establishment. He has no vision or care for the future (not the next five years, but the next fifty); it’s hard to fathom someone considering themselves an agent of good when they flaunt economic and environmental health for the masses in favor of the wealthy few. However, while Manchin is today’s face of despotism, don’t lose sight of the fact that Manchin is providing welcome cover for all corporate Democrats who can now cry foul, while being thankful they aren’t pressured to go on record voting against the general public. Many of these corporate Democrats watched happily while Manchin and Sinema emasculated the already compromised $3.5T Build Back Better reconciliation. We’re playing a game of chicken in which the Progressive Caucus has shown its willingness to flinch over and over. It’s no surprise Manchin feels like he has a free hand to exercise this vulgar display of power."
Northern Virginia congressional candidate, progressive Ally Dalsimer was not pleased with Manchin's presser today. She said that his "misleading and disingenuous comments are infuriating and heartbreaking. His deceptively reasonable and pragmatic presentation completely falls apart under the slightest bit of scrutiny, and what is left is a dishonest actor who does not care that the people of this nation, let alone his own constituents in West Virginia, desperately need a robust reconciliation bill, and that he (along with a few others) have deprived millions of Americans of basic human rights. As someone who has spent her entire adult life working to ensure our planet survives for future generations, I am disgusted that this Senator has the nerve to say that he wants to 'Inspire the rest of the world towards a cleaner environment' while he works every day to gut any and all of the environmental actions tied not just to the reconciliation bill, but seemingly every bill that threatens his family's fossil fuel empire. Senator Manchin is not an idiot; he knows exactly what he is doing. He plays the rational moderate for the cameras, but then acts without remorse to undermine the health and wellbeing of his constituents and his state. Nothing about Senator Manchin's destructive agenda over the past months has been 'moderate'" and we must stop describing him that way. He is a right-wing, pro-billionaire politician whose only goal is to enrich himself and his family. Regardless of the party initial next to his name, if it walks like a duck and talks like a duck, then it's a duck. Period."
Christine Olivo has been working in Democratic Party circles in Broward County for a long time and now she is running for a congressional seat that is likely to be empty. Last night she noted that "Investing in people is the only way to stabilize our economy. Social programs help to even the playing field for low income and middle-class families. Manchin operates as if tax payer dollars are budgeted through his personal bank account. They are not! Joe Manchin is what we get for not taking a chance on Paula Jean Swearengin."
San Fernando Valley progressive congressional candidate Shervin Aazami asked a simple question late yesterday: "Well what did we think would come out of negotiating with an obstructionist?" Please consider contributing to Ally's Shervin's, Christine's, Jason's and Sergio's campaigns by clicking on the 2022 Blue America congressional thermometer below and giving what you can.
Sergio Alcubilla, a progressive Democrat from Honolulu is running for a seat occupied by Manchin ally Ed Case. "It's time for Sen. Manchin and the rest of the obstructionist 'Asinine Nine' to tell the American people the truth of why they won't support President Biden and the rest of the Democratic Party," he told me last night. "Tell us why your corporate donors don't want paid family leave, don't want to combat climate change, and don't want what's best for the American people. Sen. Manchin mentions he needs time to study how investing in the American people will result in debt, inflation, and other scary words meant to confuse the public on the issue at hand. He must've ignored the part where President Biden said the plan would be paid fully by simply asking corporations and our super wealthy to pay their fair share. What is too hard to understand in that statement? No, Sen. Manchin and our own Rep. Ed case have not dealt in good faith. They seek to confuse and divide the American public on behalf of their corporate donors. That's not acting in good faith, that's selling out faith in the American people and faith in our future."