Manchin: Biden’s New Spending Plan Relies on ‘Shell Games’ and ‘Budget Gimmicks’

Sen. Joe Manchin (D–W.Va.Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), who’s vote could very well decide the fate of President Joe Biden’s largest legislative initiative, reiterated that he opposes any bill which increases the national debt and risks fueling inflation.

Manchin, speaking at Monday’s press conference said: “I am open to supporting the final bill that moves our country forward. But I am equally open to voting against any bill that harms our country.” He noted that both Medicare and Social Security are on track to become insolvent—an arrangement that would impose mandatory benefit cuts across the board—within the next 12 years. Manchin pointed out that it would not be wise to pass a bill “that expands social programs while irresponsibly adding to the $29 trillion of national debt.”

It was intended to create a delicate legislative environment when Democrats split President Joe Biden’s “Build Back better” proposal into two parts. pas de deuxThey’re playing a game of chicken. Instead they are playing a game. Bipartisan support was given to the roughly $1 trillion infrastructure plan, which includes $500 billion of new spending and $500 billion of repurposed spending. It cleared the Senate in July. The House has not acted on it since July. Progressive Democrats won’t send the bill to Biden’s desk unless the Senate passes a social-spending package, which would include likely tax increases.

The spending bill that Democrats are hoping to pass through the Senate by the reconciliation process is a $3.5 trillion-sized measure. Last week, Biden announced a supposed compromise in an attempt to appease Manchin and Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D–Ariz.They have been opposed to the increased taxes and the borrowing required for financing the bigger proposal.

Manchin said that Senator Willie will not accept the reduced proposal without more scrutiny.

Manchin claimed that “what I see are shell-games.” He said that “Budget tricks” would mean Biden’s proposal of $1.75 trillion cost nearly twice as much over the long-term.

The bill’s biggest flaw is the expanded, refundable tax credit for children program. It will run to about $110 billion per year. The Democrats propose to prolong it only for one year. This makes the long-term cost of the bill seem much lower than if the program had to be extended for 10 years, which is what the rule is. This framework seems to also be overestimate how much revenueDifferent proposals could result in large gaps, which would need to be filled through borrowing.

Manchin stated, “This recipe is for economic crisis.” “None should misrepresent the cost of legislation to American citizens.”

Manchin was critical of progressive elements of the House Democratic caucus. He said that even though the Senate hadn’t approved the Social Spending Bill, lawmakers from the lower chamber should still be able to vote for the Infrastructure Plan. Biden called on Friday for House leaders to vote in favor of the infrastructure bill. But, the impasse persists. Manchin stated that holding the infrastructure bill hostage “isn’t going to help me get my support for reconciliation.”

Chicken is still a popular game.