Corporations, business leaders and groups have been pressuring West. Virginia conservative Democrat Sen. Joe Manchin to oppose President Joe Biden’s agenda since the Dems gained a majority in the Senate.
Manchin’s political action committee saw a gush of corporate contributions before his decision to oppose Biden’s $1.75 trillion Build Back Better Act for a social safety net and climate change legislation, CNBC reported.
The Manchin PAC, Country Roads, received 17 contributions in October worth more than $150,000 and 19 in November totaling $110,000, according to a CNBC analysis of Federal Election Commission filings. Donors include American Express, Goldman Sachs, Lockheed Martin, UnitedHealth Group and Blue Cross Blue Shield, and natural gas company CNX Resources, Verizon, Union Pacific, Wells Fargo and PACs connected to coal and mining.
After months of negotiations with the president and members of Congress, Manchin said Sunday on Fox News that he won’t support Biden’s Build Back Better bill. Stocks and crypto initially tanked, in part, on the news, then rebounded.
“Manchin pretended to be negotiating for months and enriched himself” tweeted Blobby @Blobbytalker.
In October and November, Manchin’s PAC spent thousands of dollars on travel and hotels, CNBC reported. A leadership PAC is meant to help fund a candidate running for office, but a report from nonprofit groups Issue One and the Campaign Legal Center says many lawmakers appear to use the money for fancy resorts and entertainment.
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Manchin can singlehandedly swing a simple majority vote in the 50-50 Senate. He helped to write and pass the $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure plan that became law in November. However, he also voted with Republicans to block Biden’s vaccine mandate for private businesses and he pushed Democratic leaders to cut the bill’s price tag in half from an initial $3.5 trillion to $1.75 trillion.
The White House announced in October that it had a framework for an agreement on the bill after negotiating “in good faith” with Manchin and Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, a centrist Democrat from Arizona. Publicly, Manchin never supported the agreement, CNBC reported.
“It was always about the money,” fiveeighty+ tweeted.
Photo: Sen. Joe Manchin speaks at a news conference on Capitol Hill, Nov. 1, 2021. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon) President Joe Biden speaks about covid response and vaccinations, Dec. 21, 2021, in the White House. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
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