Joe Manchin

So Close


With all 50 Republican Senators refusing to lift a finger to fight climate change, tackle prescription drug pricing or extend the enhanced ACA subsidies for over 13 million people, Democrats have watched helplessly as two of their own Senators (Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema) have repeatedly blocked or otherwise stymied efforts to get these vital measures through the Senate.

The drama appears to finally be coming to an end this weekend, however.

Last week Sen. Manchin announced that he & Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer had come to an agreement on a heavily modified & pared-down version of what was once called the "Build Back Better Act"...newly christened as the "Inflation Reduction Act of 2022". He then spent the past week pushing the bill heavily on TV appearances/etc, and the rest of the Democratic leadership joined in a coordinated effort to promote the bill.

On the last episode of "Who Wants to Try and Appease Joe Manchin?," the entire Democratic Senate caucus, as well as President Biden, had basically given up on trying to get West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin to be reasonable after spending a solid year listening to him come up with one excuse after another not to pass an ever-shrinking domestic "soft infrastructure" agenda.

In the end, they accepted that the $3.5 trillion "Build Back Better" package, which was later slashed to around $1.6 trillion by the time it passed the House of Representatives last fall, wasn't going to happen.

Instead, they were going to have to accept a shadow of its former self: A roughly $300 billion healthcare-only package which would primarily accomplish only two of the major provisions of the original pacakge (and only part of those):