Munchkin is headed for a crucial time for Congress, where several key policy issues are at a razor’s edge in the Senate, leaving swing Democrats to heavily influence the future of the Biden agenda. At the center of that agenda is the infrastructure package that Biden and Republicans are furiously negotiating in a final attempt to cut a deal, though they remain far-fetched.
The West Virginia Democrat is still unwilling to give up on those talks with Republicans, saying, “These (things) take time.”
“I know everyone is in a hurry right now,” said Munchkin. “If anyone understands this process, it’s President Joe Biden … We have to bring our country together. We can’t be divided and further apart. We just can’t do that, we have to work together.” It takes a lot of time and energy and patience.”
Manchin on the filibuster: Senate can’t function ‘unless minority has input’
“How well did the 2013 nuclear option work when in 2017 they … got it off the Supreme Court? Whatever happens comes, let’s work together and find a way forward,” Munchkin he said. In 2013, Democrats moved to eliminate filibuster for presidential candidates other than the Supreme Court. Four years later, in 2017, Republicans did the same for Supreme Court candidates, paving the way for three of Donald Trump’s justices to be finally confirmed in the High Court.
But Manchin declined to say he would “never” support lowering the Senate’s 60 vote limit. Asked several times by CNN whether he’d take that option off the table, Munchkin nodded, instead saying, “We’re going to work the place. I don’t know what else I can tell you. You don’t.” It works as long as the minority has no input.”
Munchkin responds to Biden’s comment
“I think it’s completely out of context,” Munchkin said. “I spoke to the White House, I think it was completely out of context.”
White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Biden’s remarks were not criticism.
“It was not so, no, he considers them both to be friends, he considers them both to be good working partners, and he also believes that in a democracy, we have to work for each and every issue. There’s no need to keep track of every detail together,” said Saki.
Munchkin ‘very disappointed’ over failed 1/6 commission vote
Manchin said he was “very disappointed” at the Senate’s unsuccessful vote blocked by Republicans to establish a bipartisan commission to investigate the January 6 Capitol uprising.
Asked what evidence he has that Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell wants to work with Democrats, especially after McConnell opposed the commission, Munchkin said, “I think what he did was wrong. I’ve said so. He knows how I feel about it.”
Referring to the blockade of the commission by Republicans, Munchkin lamented, “They saw it as really political, and I didn’t see it as political. I saw it as our country coming back together.” “
This story has been updated with additional development on Thursday.