Manchin: Trump has good intentions on taxes

Manchin: Trump has good intentions on taxes
© Greg Nash

Sen. Joe ManchinJoseph (Joe) ManchinOvernight Energy: EPA aims to work more closely with industry Overnight Finance: Lawmakers grill Equifax chief over hack | Wells Fargo CEO defends bank's progress | Trump jokes Puerto Rico threw budget 'out of whack' | Mortgage tax fight tests industry clout Lawmakers try again on miners’ pension bill MORE (D-W.Va.) said Thursday he gives President Trump the benefit of the doubt in not seeking a big tax cut on the rich and wants to sit down with his Republican colleagues on the issue.

“I believe the president when he says it’s not going to be a tax cut for the rich ... I don’t think that was his intention,” Manchin, who was invited to dinner with Trump as part of the president’s courtship of red-state Democrats, told The Hill.

“I’m open to sitting down; I want to have a seat at the table.”

The conservative Democrat is up for reelection in 2018 in a state Trump won in the presidential election and has a target on his back from Republicans looking to expand their majority in the Senate.

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While Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerOvernight Health Care: Schumer calls for tying ObamaCare fix to children's health insurance | Puerto Rico's water woes worsen | Dems plead for nursing home residents' right to sue Crying on TV doesn't qualify Kimmel to set nation's gun agenda Trump knocks ‘fake’ news coverage of his trip to Puerto Rico MORE (D-N.Y.) and many other Democrats blasted the GOP tax framework as “wealth-fare” and a massive giveaway to the rich, Manchin was more reserved.

Asked about Schumer’s criticisms, he said: “I’m not going to call it anything, I’m not going to cast stones and call names. I want to sit down and work for something that is good for America,” he said.

But he then added: “What I don’t want is my grandchildren further in debt.”

The GOP’s outline for tax reform could cost the country $2.2 trillion in lost revenue over a decade, according to a preliminary study by the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, a fiscally conservative advocacy group.