Manchin says 'I don't see a deal tonight'

Sen. Joe ManchinJoe ManchinWith extreme gerrymanders locking in, Biden needs to make democracy preservation job one Five reasons for Biden, GOP to be thankful this season White House looks to rein in gas prices ahead of busy travel season MORE (D-W.Va.) said after a meeting with White House officials and Sen. Kyrsten SinemaKyrsten SinemaWith extreme gerrymanders locking in, Biden needs to make democracy preservation job one Five reasons for Biden, GOP to be thankful this season Five Senate Democrats reportedly opposed to Biden banking nominee MORE (D-Ariz.) that there would not be a deal on Thursday night on a framework for a social spending bill.

"We're going to come to an agreement. I'm trying to make sure they understand I'm at $1.5 trillion," Manchin told reporters after the meeting with Sinema, White House domestic policy adviser Susan RiceSusan RiceAn unquestioning press promotes Rep. Adam Schiff's book based on Russia fiction Biden administration, stakeholders to host interagency event on economic equity Black Caucus pushes for priorities in final deal MORE and senior adviser Brian DeeseBrian DeeseThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by ExxonMobil - Arbery case, Biden spending bill each test views of justice Democrats optimistic as social spending bill heads to Senate Sunday shows - Spotlight shifts to Senate for Biden spending plan MORE.

But pressed if that agreement was possible on Thursday night, as Democratic leaders had hoped, he added: "I don't see a deal tonight. I really don't."


Manchin's comments are a blow to the hopes of Democratic leadership, who wanted to try to work out an agreement on the reconciliation package that would convince progressives to support a quick vote on the Senate-passed bipartisan infrastructure bill.

Democratic leadership and the White House is trying to defang a standoff in the House, where progressives are threatening to vote down the Senate's roughly $1 trillion infrastructure bill.

House Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiFive reasons for Biden, GOP to be thankful this season Bipartisan success in the Senate signals room for more compromise The GOP's post-1/6 playbook is clear — and it's dangerous MORE (D-Calif.) and a group of House moderates had agreed to bring up the Senate bill by Monday, but Pelosi then delayed that until Thursday in order to buy more time to work out an agreement.

But the hours of behind-the-scenes haggling have yet to clinch a deal. Sinema and Manchin both left the Capitol after the meeting with White House officials.

Rice and Deese then went briefly to Senate Majority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerSchumer mourns death of 'amazing' father Feehery: The honest contrarian Biden administration to release oil from strategic reserve: reports MORE's (D-N.Y.) office, before going back to Pelosi's office.


Manchin didn't give reporters a hard timeline for coming up to an agreement, except that he hoped that it was "soon."

"I mean we're working as hard as we can. ... No one's given up," he added.

But House progressives have been dug in against supporting the Senate-passed infrastructure bill and vowed throughout Thursday that they had the votes to sink it if Pelosi brings it to the floor.

House Democratic leadership initially pushed votes until 9 p.m., then 10 p.m., and around 9:40 p.m. Pelosi sent a letter to her caucus but didn't give an update on the schedule for the night.

"Discussions continue with the House, Senate and White House to reach a bicameral framework agreement to Build Back Better through a reconciliation bill," she wrote.