Manchin blasts McConnell for playing politics on Jan. 6 bill

Sen. Joe ManchinJoe ManchinOvernight Energy & Environment — Presented by the League of Conservation Voters — Biden, Xi talk climate at UN forum Election reform in the states is not all doom and gloom Manchin presses Interior nominee on leasing program review MORE (D-W.Va.) on Thursday blasted Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellMcConnell, Shelby offer government funding bill without debt ceiling Franken targets senators from both parties in new comedy tour Woodward: Milley was 'setting in motion sensible precautions' with calls to China MORE (R-Ky.) for playing politics over a bill establishing a bipartisan commission to investigate the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol.

Manchin issued a strongly worded statement saying there was “no excuse” for Republicans to vote against the commission and accused McConnell of blocking the commission to help the GOP avoid the topic ahead of the 2022 midterm elections, when the Senate majority will be in play.

“There is no excuse for any Republican to vote against the commission since Democrats have agreed to everything they asked for,” Manchin said.

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“Mitch McConnell has made this his political position, thinking it will help his 2022 elections. They do not believe the truth will set you free, so they continue to live in fear,” he said.

The statement comes ahead of an expected vote on the legislation, which could come as soon as Thursday.

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McConnell said Wednesday that Democrats were pushing the commission to keep former President TrumpDonald TrumpUN meeting with US, France canceled over scheduling issue Trump sues NYT, Mary Trump over story on tax history McConnell, Shelby offer government funding bill without debt ceiling MORE in the spotlight.

McConnell has blasted the House proposal as “slanted and unbalanced,” leading other Senate Republicans to oppose the provision.

Just two Senate Republicans have said they will vote for the bill: Sens. Mitt RomneyWillard (Mitt) Mitt RomneyGOP senator will 'probably' vote for debt limit increase Five questions and answers about the debt ceiling fight Warren, Daines introduce bill honoring 13 killed in Kabul attack MORE (Utah) and Lisa MurkowskiLisa Ann MurkowskiTrump, allies launch onslaught as midterms kick into gear Emboldened Trump takes aim at GOP foes The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - DC prepares for Saturday of festivals & Jan. 6 demonstration MORE (Alaska). Both voted to convict former President Trump for inciting a mob to attack the Capitol on Jan. 6. 

Sen. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsMcConnell privately urged GOP senators to oppose debt ceiling hike GOP senator will 'probably' vote for debt limit increase Welcome to ground zero of climate chaos MORE (R-Maine), who also voted to convict Trump, said she would vote to advance the bill so that she could propose an amendment to make changes to the bill.

That would leave the bill short of the votes needed to break a filibuster.

Manchin told reporters Thursday, however, that he would not nix the filibuster to pass the bill to form the commission. 

Manchin and Sen. Kyrsten SinemaKyrsten SinemaDemocrats reject hardball tactics against Senate parliamentarian  The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Alibaba - Democrats return to disappointment on immigration This week: Democrats face mounting headaches MORE (D-Ariz.) pressed their GOP colleagues on Tuesday to work with them on a bipartisan path to creating a commission investigating the events of Jan. 6.