Manchin plants himself firmly in McConnell’s back pocket, rejects saving democracy

Manchin plants himself firmly in McConnell’s back pocket, rejects saving democracy

Sen. Mitch McConnell must feel pretty damned confident about having Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin in his back pocket in his “100%” commitment to make sure President Biden fails. He’s got good reason given Manchin’s public statements lately.

After a bipartisan leadership meeting with Biden on infrastructure Wednesday, McConnell made it abundantly clear that he won’t be doing any negotiating. “We’re not interested in reopening the 2017 tax bill, we both made that clear to the president, that’s our red line,” McConnell said. That’s not very bipartisan-y of him, is it? McCarthy was worse, blasting out a campaign text immediately after talking about “Corrupt Joe Biden” with a “radical Socialist agenda.” (Trumpist capitalization all his.)

With all that, Manchin still isn’t backing down from his insistence that this and every other bill be done with Republicans. That’s despite Republicans stating that they will oppose anything Biden wants out loud, repeatedly. It’s explicitly been made official Senate Republican policy. McConnell did that with this “100%” commitment to fighting Biden comment, and Sen. Ted Cruz reiterated it Tuesday, this time on the voting rights and elections reform bill that the Senate Rules Committee took up. The Washington Post‘s Paul Waldman caught an exchange between Sen. Angus King and Cruz about the numerous Republican amendments they brought to the committee.

“If this amendment and others that you suggest are accepted, would you vote for the bill?” King asked, rhetorically. He knows better by now. Cruz answered truthfully and essentially, no. “To be candid, it is difficult to imagine a set of amendments being adopted that would cause me to vote for this bill—it would have to be a fundamentally different bill.” Like one that didn’t secure voting rights and didn’t keep dark money out of politics. “That being said,” he continued, “each of these amendments is a designed to strike out egregious aspects of this bill, so if some of these amendments were adopted, it might conceivably convince some Republicans to support it, if it ceased being a partisan power grab.”

In other words, a few Republicans might be willing to support a bill that essentially does nothing. And now Manchin is fully enabling that tactic. He’s telling Republicans that using the Big Lie to destroy democracy is a valid tactic.

The asshole actually said this: “I believe Democrats and Republicans feel very strongly about protecting the ballot boxes allowing people to protect the right to vote.” He has officially announced that he is going to oppose the For the People Act, but says instead he will support the John Lewis Voting Rights Act.

Which Republicans are also going to filibuster.

“It could be done bipartisan to start getting confidence back in our system,” he said. It won’t. Manchin also won’t support a limited exception to the filibuster rules to let voting rights legislation pass with a simple majority, which is one possible reform. “If you do it for one time you basically destroy the Senate as we know it,” Manchin said. Never mind that the Senate as we know it needs to be destroyed because the likes of Manchin and the Republicans he’s enabling are keeping it a white supremacist institution that subverts democracy.

Even worse than all of that, he reinforced again the idea that Republicans have a valid claim in saying that our elections aren’t secure. “It’s about the country,” he said. “It’s about the fairness of the system. If the voting system in our country can’t be secure and it can’t be open and accessible to everybody and protected for everybody, no matter what your race, no matter what preference, you have—you have not only a right but a responsibility to vote and we shouldn’t make it difficult for you.”

Maintaining the minority rule status quo that has allowed Republicans representing a significant minority of the populace to call all the shots on pretty much everything is the only thing Republicans will get behind. Even when that means purging members who have ideological purity when it comes to policy, but refuse to endorse the GOP’s ongoing electoral coup attempts.

From Daily Kos at Read More. This article is republished from DailyKos under an open content license. Read the original article at DailyKos.

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