People must stop losing their minds to Joe Manchin and Biden’s stimulus bill
Congressional Democrats spent this last Sunday before Christmas in a state of collective panic, against West Virginia Democratic Senator Joe Manchin finally and unequivocally President Biden’s Build Back Better spending plan. And that’s a shame – the Democrats’ response, that is.
Here’s what’s going on, to let everyone know. The rest of Biden’s agenda is now essentially at the mercy of whatever happens in the midterm election year of 2022. That’s because the Senate has now adjourned for 2021. Without, of course, embracing Biden Build Back Better’s $ 1.7 trillion spending plan – the plan that, among other things, sought to extend the monthly child tax credit stimulus checks by one year. . Because Democrats barely control the Senate, and in fact only control it on a technical point, Manchin spoke out a ‘no’ on the bill in a Sunday interview that sent his outlook in the tubes for the moment. And there is no guarantee, at least not yet, that his chances of passing will be better in January.
Manchin middle finger in Biden
Of all places, Manchin – again, a Democrat – chose the Fox News Sunday aired on Sunday, December 19, as an opportunity to finally declare that he will not support the bill in its current form, and that’s it. Manchin’s “no” puts him in league with 50 Republicans against the bill, so there is a majority against.
Does that mean that the provisions of the bill, such as the extension of stimulus checks, will never see the light of day? Of course not. It is not Senator Manchin’s fault that the Biden administration decided to “mow the kitchen” of its national agenda, placing all the priorities the administration could think of in a staggering Frankenstein of a bill – and not even the first bill with a price tag over a billion dollars this year either. One trillion, of course, is one of those numbers that rarely occurs naturally in the real world. There aren’t even a trillion people on the planet. But once politicians win their local popularity contests and are sent to Washington DC to spend other people’s money, trillion-dollar legislation begins to fly.
Just blame the guy you can’t convince
One approach, now that the administration’s all-or-nothing legislative package has gone up in smoke, is to break it. The extension of the Child Tax Credit stimulus check, for example, is probably the most popular aspect of Build Back Better among voters. Instead, however, Democrats have for now chosen to do the same thing party members do whenever they are in power:
It’s a lot easier to get personal and blame the guy who doesn’t stand in line. Instead of doing something else – in fact, legislating. Convince others of the merits of their position, bargain, negotiate.
The same party that spent four years demonizing the Republican Senate for walking along with President Trump’s platform is now reading to tar and pluck Senator Manchin because it won’t do the same for theirs.
Obviously, none of you have read a history book. What you are witnessing now is actually one of the best things about American democracy. More precisely, it is the absence of a concentration of power built into the system. Interestingly, if you stop the average person on the street and ask them what they think makes America great? They are likely to tell you things like our freedom of the press. Or, perhaps, our right to free speech, to assemble peacefully. That sort of thing. Completely oblivious to the fact that even countries ruled by despots, like Russia, have a similar bill of rights.
White House: It’s all Manchin’s fault
The difference is that here, unlike there, power is not concentrated in one person or one branch of government.
It doesn’t matter whether Senator Manchin spoke against the bill today because he is some sort of independent-minded maverick, or completely in the pocket of a special interest group, or for another reason. This is the system, and these are the rules. It is certainly not the controversial West Virginia senator’s fault that Democrats failed to convince enough voters last year to give them more than a barely there Senate majority.
Meanwhile: If, like me, you think that this notion of control over power that the drafters have built into our system of governance is one of the best things about it, then you should also be appalled at the unfortunate inclination of two parts to change. the rules when they don’t like a result. All the rules, from court runaway to abandonment of filibuster. That’s the kind of thing kids do, changing the rules, when things don’t go as planned in the playground.
And give me a break with one Democrat after another yelling at the press today that Senator Manchin is the source of everything wrong with the world. Rather than taking an introspective look at what went wrong – to greet the failure with the determination to identify what happened and try something new next time – the White House released Sunday a long embarrassing screed attacking Manchin. It’s all his fault, in other words.
Focus on COVID-19
No wonder, in the first year of this president who has promised to “stop the virus” and restore courtesy and two-party politics to Washington, COVID-19 is more than ever out of control.
Inflation is at its highest level for three decades. Crime is skyrocketing (in the words of Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi: “There is an attitude of anarchy in our country that comes from I do not know where”). The resentment between the parties still looks a lot like it was last year, under President Trump. As a result, Biden’s approval rating dropped.
“The thing we should all be focusing our attention on is (is) the variant… we have (COVID) coming back to us in so many different ways in different ways. It affects our lives again.
Absolutely right. Do you know who said those words on Sunday?
West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin.