Joe Manchin Craters Momentum for Build Back Better, Hours After Joe Biden Features at Glasgow Climate Change Summit

Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., prepares to chair a hearing in the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, as lawmakers work to advance the $1 trillion bipartisan bill, at the Capitol in Washington, Thursday, Aug. 5, 2021. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite

Sen. Joe Manchin sucked momentum out of President Joe Biden’s proposed Build Back Better climate plan on Monday, just hours after the president boasted to world leaders in Glasgow about what his framework would do to reduce carbon emissions in the United States.

“My Build Back Better framework will make historic investments in clean energy,” Biden boasted in his speech to the United Nations climate summit Monday morning. “The most significant investment to deal with the climate crisis that any advanced nation has made ever.”

The president’s revised framework released last week proposed $555 billion in climate related green energy infrastructure and climate change spending, giving Biden a platform to discuss what he described as a “moral imperative” for the United States.

But about three hours later, Manchin held a press conference to say he was willing to vote against Biden’s proposed bill, if it did not meet his demands.

“I’m open to supporting a final bill that helps move our country forward. But I’m equally open to voting against a bill that hurts our country,” he said during his press conference warning about the effect of the dramatic spending proposals on the future of the country.

Manchin at least waited until Biden was able to promote it at the climate summit before slamming the brakes on the agenda and demanding more time.

The White House acted quickly in reaction to Manchin, as press secretary Jen Psaki asserted in a statement that the bill would eventually earn his support.

“[W]e remain confident that the plan will gain Senator Manchin’s support,” the statement read.

Biden will return to the United States on Wednesday largely in the same position he was when he left — with Democrat moderates and progressives sparring over his agenda in Congress.


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