Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., at a press conference on Wednesday criticized Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., for failing to support the $3.5 trillion Build Back Better bill because he fears “an entitlement state.”
“Does Senator Manchin think we should once again have one of the highest levels of childhood poverty of any major country on earth?,” Sanders asked as part of a series of questions that tried to undermine Manchin’s intentions.
Sanders said Manchin’s proposal aligns with “powerful special interests” who oppose the “enormously popular” bill, including the pharmaceutical industry, health insurance companies, the fossil fuel industry and the billionaire class.
Manchin remains committed to a $1.5 trillion maximum bottom-line for the budget reconciliation bill, which most Democrats consider an unacceptable betrayal of the party’s interests.
Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, D-Ariz., likewise opposes the budget reconciliation bill, though she has not counteroffered.
Sinema has avoided questions from creepy activists and corporate media reporters who wants answers about her opposition to the bill.
Manchin has given straightforward answers about his opposition, AlterNet reported.
Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV): “I’ve never been a liberal in any way, shape, or form,” so if progressives want a bigger reconciliation bill, “elect more liberals.” pic.twitter.com/Xkf7NLRMtp
— The Recount (@therecount) September 30, 2021
Sanders implicitly laid the blame for all of America’s economic, environmental, and social ailments on Manchin.
“And, perhaps, most importantly, does Senator Manchin not believe what the scientists are telling us that we face an existential threat regarding climate change, and that it is absolutely imperative that we move boldly to cut carbon emissions?,” he asked.
Sanders told Manchin to explain “with specificity what he wants and does not want and explain that to the American people,” but the West Virginia Democrat has given that answer many times: a smaller budget reconciliation bill that will cause less inflation.