Senate

McConnell: Manchin’s opposition to Biden plan ‘great shot in the arm for the country’

Julia Nikhinson

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said Sen. Joe Manchin’s (D-W.Va.) opposition to President Biden’s social spending package is a “great shot in the arm for the country.” 

During an appearance on Fox News’s “The Guy Benson Show” on Monday, McConnell said he was happy that Manchin declined to support the latest iteration of the framework, referring to comments he made late last week just before the Senate left for the year.

“I said the single biggest favor Joe Manchin could do for the country is to kill this bill. That’s what the country needs,” McConnell said.

“It is absolutely inappropriate and unnecessary at a time when we’re fighting inflation and we’ve already showered entirely too much money … on the country, which helped create the inflation, with that American rescue package earlier this year, which of course none of my members voted for,” McConnell said. 

“So it was an exciting thing to hear. Great shot in the arm for the country. I think it’s exactly what the country needed at this particular time,” McConnell added. 

When asked about the Biden administration’s response to Manchin’s opposition, McConnell said he was shocked that the White House said Manchin went back on his word.

“In the time I’ve been Republican leader, I never get angry about losing a vote because, you know, the most important vote is always the next vote. So I was shocked at the vitriol, and [it] basically seemed to me that they were calling Sen. Manchin a liar. I think that was not smart,” McConnell told Benson. 

“This is a 50-50 Senate. It’s going to be 50-50 for another year. And believe me, that’s not the way I would have handled it,” he added.

Manchin announced on “Fox News Sunday” that he would not support Biden’s climate and social spending bill, effectively killing the administration’s top legislative priority. 

“I cannot vote to continue with this piece of legislation. I just can’t. I tried everything humanly possible. I can’t get there,” Manchin told “Fox News Sunday” guest host Bret Baier. “This is a no on this legislation.”

In a statement, White House press secretary Jen Psaki on Sunday said that Manchin’s opposition was “inexplicable,” adding that he went back on the framework that Biden presented to him last week. 

“If his comments on FOX and written statement indicate an end to that effort, they represent a sudden and inexplicable reversal in his position, and a breach of his commitments to the President and the Senator’s colleagues in the House and Senate,” Psaki said.

Tags Biden spending bill Fox News Jen Psaki Joe Biden Joe Manchin Mitch McConnell

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