It looks like West Virginia Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin simply is not ready to have socialism and backbreaking debt destroy the United States.
The problem for Democrats is that, unlike the weasely politician Joe Biden, who used to have a little bit of sense about these things before it wasn’t cool anymore, Manchin is standing on principle. And therefore, he is going to be tough to dislodge. And he can sink the whole $3.5 trillion thing, no question.
With Democrats failing to get Manchin to cave Thursday night, Nancy Pelosi was forced to delay a planned Thursday vote on a $1 trillion infrastructure package progressives won’t support unless . . . Manchin caves on the $3.5 trillion socialist spending package.
As the Wall Street Journal notes:
Manchin has been sending signals for months that his support has limits. First he refused to break the Senate filibuster. Then he said he couldn’t support $3.5 trillion because it’s inflationary and the economy no longer needs the help. Then in our pages he called for a “strategic pause” on the spending bill to debate specific policies. He might as well have been Ted Cruz for all that Democratic leaders paid attention.
Then, in statements and remarks Wednesday and Thursday, Mr. Manchin laid down markers that Democrats can no longer ignore. He won’t support more than $1.5 trillion in new spending. He says “social programs must be targeted to those in need, not expanded beyond what is fiscally possible.” He’s willing to raise some taxes, but nothing like what’s in the $2.1 trillion House Ways and Means bill.
“What I have made clear to the President and Democratic leaders,” Mr. Manchin said in a statement, “is that spending trillions more on new and expanded government programs, when we can’t even pay for the essential social programs, like Social Security and Medicare, is the definition of fiscal insanity.”