Democratic Senator Joe Manchin drew the wrath of progressives on Monday night after he promised not to vote against his own party when it came to grabbing the Supreme Court or stopping the filibustering, even if the Senate was to be split 50-50 after the runoff elections in Georgia.
The U.S. Senator from West Virginia appeared on Fox News and said he would “not vote with the Democrats” on these key issues if the Senate were split down the middle, which would offset the decisive vote of Kamala Harris as vice president.
In a conversation with Bret Baier on the Special Report, Manchin said: “If both senators of Georgia were elected by the Democratic Party, it would be 50-50 if both Dan Sullivan and Thom Tillis win. Fifty-fifty means a draw. But if a senator does not vote on the democratic side, there is no draw and there is no bill.
“So I make a commitment to you tonight, and I make a commitment to all of your viewers and everyone else watching, that I want to dispel those fears for you now. When they talk about whether it’s about packing the courts or ending the filibustering, I will not vote for it. I will not vote for the courts to be cleared and I will not vote for the filibustering to end.
The Democratic Senator added that the upper chamber was created to “work across party lines” and argued that the Senate would lose its essence as an institution if these “barriers” were torn down.
“I don’t know of any Democrats in the faction who are in favor of defining the police. We are not in favor at all,” he later added. “And when they talk about ‘Medicare for All,’ for some of them we can’t even pay Medicare. That makes no sense at all.”
The legislature’s attack on progressive legislative goals and any future attempt to overthrow the 6-3 conservative majority on the Supreme Court benches ranked with the progressive members of the Democratic faction.
In response to the Fox News interview, Minnesota Congressman Ilhan Omar tweeted: “Stop worrying about the progressives, this could be the reason we don’t win the Senate elections in Georgia. My goodness.”
Mike Siegel, a progressive Democratic candidate for the 10th Congressional District in Texas, said: “Some people don’t even believe in democracy. He would rather starve people & COVID than change the rules of the Senate. If he does not support Democratic legislation, he should lose his seats on committees – including the Budget and Energy Committee.
The Justice Democrats’ progressive PAC also reacted to the clip of Manchin on Fox News with an emoji that vomits. New York Congressman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Congressman-designate Jamaal Bowman (D), and the rest of the “Squad” won the support of the influential group when they ran to replace the moderates.
Senator Manchin’s remarks were the latest salvo in an ongoing struggle between the left and center Democratic Party after poor performances in several major general and senatorial elections last week.
In a leaked Democratic appeal in the House of Representatives on Thursday, lawmakers bickered over who was to blame for unexpected losses. In the course of the appeal, Virginia Congresswoman Abigail Spanberger blamed progressive lawmakers for the losses of GOP challengers in several House of Representatives elections, while Michigan Congresswoman Rashia Tlaib said progressive Democrats were not wrong to “fight for issues that matter to our communities.