In December, Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) effectively killed President Joe Biden’s massive $1.75 trillion Build Back Better social programs and climate change spending bill by refusing to support it.
Liberal reporters have continued to hound Manchin about the progressive agenda bill, but he made it clear in no uncertain terms Tuesday that “Build Back Better”, at least in its current form, has been taken off of life support and is now “dead,” The Washington Times reported.
Biden’s Build Back Better bill is “dead,” according to Manchin
“What Build Back Better bill?” Sen. Manchin said in response to a reporter’s question about the stalled legislation. “There isn’t one. I don’t know what you all are talking about.”
Asked if he had been involved in any further negotiations on the bill, the centrist West Virginia senator replied “No” and added bluntly, “It’s dead.”
“If we’re talking about the whole big package, that’s gone,” Manchin said. “We’ll see what people come up with.”
Legitimate concerns prevented support of measure
It was on Dec. 19, 2021, that Sen. Manchin had killed the bill in the first place, releasing a statement explaining why, in spite of the incredible pressure on him from the Biden White House and his fellow Democrats, he simply couldn’t in good conscience support the measure.
“I have always said, ‘If I can’t go back home and explain it, I can’t vote for it,'” the senator said at that time. “Despite my best efforts, I cannot explain the sweeping Build Back Better Act in West Virginia and I cannot vote to move forward on this mammoth piece of legislation.”
Manchin proceeded to cite a number of concerns that prevented him from supporting the bill, such as rising inflation and the national debt, a resurgent coronavirus pandemic, and growing geopolitical issues.
Same concerns still in play, if not even worse now
According to CNN, all of those things are still of great concern to Sen. Manchin, and he told reporters Tuesday, “My main concern is inflation. The high costs to everyone in my state and around the country I hear from.”
“And also the geopolitical unrest we have in Ukraine. That’s going to be a big cost, some sooner than later,” he continued. “And on top of that: Covid. We have to see which way Covid goes, and what effect it’s going to have on our economy. Those are still the driving forces.”
The senator did, however, note that he is “open to talk to everybody” about making changes to the legislation, but acknowledged that, at least to this point, “there’s not been any formal, basically, sit down meetings or things of that sort.”
The latest remarks from Manchin couldn’t have come at a worse time for Democrats, as ABC News reported that, just one day earlier, a concerted effort had been launched by House Democrats and allied outside groups to revive the Build Back Better bill with demanding letters and media ads calling for immediate passage of the “dead” spending legislation.