Centrist Sen. Joe ManchinJoe ManchinSchumer sets up Wednesday vote to suspend debt ceilingOvernight Energy & Environment California lawmakers clash over oil spillAttacks on Sinema turn increasingly personalMORE (D-W.Va.) on Tuesday signaled he is open to a budget reconciliation bill in the ballpark of $1.9 trillion to $2.2 trillion, above the limit he set just last week of $1.5 trillion.
Manchin and his fellow moderate Sen. Kyrsten SinemaKyrsten SinemaAttacks on Sinema turn increasingly personalBiden to hit the road in economic agenda pushCalifornia Democrats blast offshore drilling in oil spill’s wakeMORE (D-Ariz.) are still far apart from liberals such as Sens. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenFed’s internal watchdog to review trades by top officialsChristie: 2020 Joe Biden ‘is now officially dead and buried’ Senate Democrats dial down the Manchin tensionMORE (D-Mass.) and Bernie SandersBernie SandersOvernight Energy & Environment California lawmakers clash over oil spillColorado’s new congressional district attracts Hispanic candidatesManchin clashes with fellow Democrats over fossil fuel demandsMORE (I-Vt.) who thought the upper chamber had a deal to spend $3.5 trillion on President BidenJoe BidenTop US and Israeli security officials to discuss Iran, Palestinians in WashingtonOn The Money Presented by NRHC Biden plays debt limit hardball with McConnellHighway bill’s long and winding roadMOREs human infrastructure package, but the two sides are inching closer.
Im not ruling anything out, but the bottom line is I want to make sure that were strategic and we do the right job and we dont basically add more to the concerns we have right now, Manchin told reporters Tuesday.
It was a small departure from his position last week when he announced: My top-line has been $1.5 [trillion].
He also told reporters last week that he doesnt want to change our whole society to an entitlement mentality.
Manchins comments last week sparked a backlash from progressives, though his Democratic Senate colleagues have been careful not to criticize him for fear of angering a key vote.
But while Manchin has signaled some flexibility on the top-line number, there are a number of significant disagreements still to resolve with fellow Democrats.
One major sticking point is his insistence that the reconciliation bill include the Hyde Amendment, which prohibits using federal funds for abortion expenses.
Warren has criticized the Hyde Amendment as disproportionately affecting low income women since it prohibits Medicaid from funding abortion.
Another major difference is Manchins insistence that natural gas be eligible for grants under the $150 billion Clean Electricity Performance Program, a core component of the reconciliation bills attempt to combat climate change.
Environmentalists and congressional Democrats have slammed electricity production from natural gas without the use of carbon-capture technology as wholly unproductive to the goal of stopping global warming.
Manchin has also balked at a carbon tax, an idea being pushed hard by Sens. Sheldon WhitehouseSheldon WhitehouseManchin clashes with fellow Democrats over fossil fuel demandsLeveling the playing field for recycled plasticsOn The Money Democratic divides deepen as progressives hold the lineMORE (D-R.I.), Chris CoonsChris Andrew CoonsSenate Democrats dial down the Manchin tensionManchin raises red flag on carbon taxDems punch back over GOP holdup of Biden SBA nomineeMORE (D-Del.) and other Democrats. The West Virginia senator is worried it could be used to eliminate jobs in the coal industry, which historically has been a major employer in his state.