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(CNN) – Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia said he does not accept the social spending bill, a breakthrough for legislation where Democrats need your vote to pass it in the Senate.
Manchin has always been a key obstacle to legislation, sharing concerns about certain provisions in the economic bill that would expand the country’s social safety net and how they can exacerbate skyrocketing inflation in the country.RELATED
“And I can’t vote to continue this legislation. I just can’t. I’ve tried everything humanly possible. I can’t get there,” he said on “Fox News Sunday.” “This is a no to this legislation. I have tried everything I know how to do. And the president has worked diligently. He has been wonderful working with him. He knows I’ve had concerns and problems that I’ve had and, you know, he did the What we should all be directing our attention to is the variant, a covid that is coming back to us in so many different aspects in different ways, is affecting our lives again. “
Manchin’s support for the bill, a $ 1.9 billion spending plan focused on expanding the nation’s social safety net, reducing Americans’ healthcare and childcare costs, and climate change, is necessary for Democrats pass this legislation through a process called budget reconciliation, which means it would only take 51 votes to pass.
Progressive Independent Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont harshly criticized Manchin for revoking his support, saying, “I think he will have a lot to explain to the people of West Virginia” and called on Democrats to put the bill to a vote to pressure Manchin to vote unofficially.
“I hope we bring a strong bill to the Senate as soon as we can and let Mr. Manchin explain to the people of West Virginia why he doesn’t have the guts to stand up to the powerful special interests,” Sanders told Jake Tapper. on CNN this Sunday on “State of the Union.”
“If he doesn’t have the courage to do the right thing for working families in West Virginia and America, let him vote no in front of everyone,” Sanders added.
A source familiar with Manchin’s plan told CNN that he relayed his decision to the White House and the Democratic leadership before making his announcement.
A person familiar with the talks said it was clear that Manchin was heading in this direction, as Biden privately told his aides this week that he was no longer confident that he could finally get the West Virginia Democrat to join. But White House officials were surprised when Manchin informed them Sunday morning that he had already reached a final decision.
Their reaction was not positive, according to the source. A senior administration official told CNN it was “totally a surprise.” Manchin informed the White House that they were the first to know and that he had not even told his staff yet.
Manchin had previously expressed multiple concerns about the legislation, which passed the Democratic-controlled House last month. He wanted to lower the bill in several areas, including paid family leave, a methane fee on emissions from energy producers, and an expansion of Medicare to cover hearing costs. It was also seeking changes to some of the provisions of the tax portion of the bill.
CNN has reached out to the White House for comment.
CNN’s Lauren Fox, Chandelis Duster, Aaron Pellish, Sarah Fortinsky, Kaitlin Collins and John Harwood contributed to this report.