Manchin: Trump has good intentions on taxes

Manchin: Trump has good intentions on taxes
© Greg Nash

Sen. Joe ManchinJoe ManchinOn The Money — Democrats craft billionaire tax with deal in reach Democrats face critical 72 hours Overnight Health Care — Presented by Altria — Manchin nixes Medicare expansion 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 SchumerChuck SchumerSenators weigh future of methane fee in spending bill Biden hopes for deal on economic agenda before Europe trip The Senate is setting a dangerous precedent with Iron Dome funding 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.