WASHINGTON (Fwrd Axis) — Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) is reportedly telling his colleagues in the Senate that progressive Democrats need to pick just one of three policies President Joe Biden is proposing and disregard the others.
Axios reported Wednesday night that Manchin is making the demand that progressives pick between expanded child tax credit, paid family medical leave, or subsidies for child care. While Manchin has shown a willingness to negotiate, this demand will likely complicate any potential deal for an agreement on a figure for Biden’s Build Back Better agenda.
Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) blasted both Manchin and Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) earlier Wednesday, accusing them of trying to sabotage Biden’s agenda and Democrats’ chances of passing both pieces of legislation.
“48 out of 50 members of the Democratic caucus in the Senate support this bill,” Sanders said. “And 210 members, 96% of the Democratic caucus in the House, support this bill. And, by the way, the President of the United States supports this bill.”
“It is wrong, it is really not playing fair,” Sanders added. “Two people do not have a right to sabotage what 48 want.”
Biden has previously said he would scale back his top-line number from $3.5 trillion to $2.2 trillion but Manchin is still committed to $1.5 trillion, a position that is frustrating the Vermont senator.
“Senator Manchin has been critical of the $3.5 trillion proposal that many of us support,” Sanders said. “But the time is long overdue for him to tell us with specificity what he wants and does not want and explain that to the American people.”
Biden has proposed a $3,600-per- child tax credit, which he has funded in the American Rescue Plan. He wants to extend that for another four years, which would cost around $450 billion. The White House proposed $225 billion over 10 years in April for providing paid family medical leave.