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Manchin Blasts AOC Over Infrastructure: ‘Divide, Divide, Divide’
US-ATTACKS-CONGRESS-9/11-ANNIVERSARY Senator Joe Manchin (D-WVA) is seen after a ceremony to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks on the steps of the US Capitol in Washington, DC on September 13, 2021. (Photo by MANDEL NGAN / AFP) (Photo by MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images) MANDEL NGAN / Contributor
MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images

Democratic Senator Joe Manchin (WV) pushed back against Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) over the weekend after the congresswoman criticized Manchin’s stance on the massive $3.5 trillion human infrastructure package Democrats are attempting to move through Congress. 

Ocasio-Cortez previously criticized Manchin in a tweet earlier this month after the senator said he would not support the huge price tag on the bill Democrats are trying to get through with no Republican support. 

She tweeted, “Manchin has weekly huddles w/ Exxon & is one of many senators who gives lobbyists their pen to write so-called “bipartisan” fossil fuel bills. It’s killing people. Our people. At least 12 last night. Sick of this ‘bipartisan’ corruption that masquerades as clear-eyed moderation.” 

Appearing on CNN’s “State of the Union” on Sunday, Manchin said he didn’t have the types of meetings she claimed.

“Absolutely not. Absolutely not,” Manchin told host Dana Bash. “I keep my door open for everybody. It’s totally false.”

He said “superlatives” like what Ocasio-Cortez used are “just awful” and “continue to divide, divide, divide.”

“I don’t know that young lady that well. I really don’t. I have met her one time, I think, between sets here. But that’s it. So we have not had any conversations. She just speculating and saying things because she wants to,” he added.

As The Hill reported, “When pressed on Sunday by Bash on criticism from a number of Democrats that Manchin is opposing the bill because he is ‘bought and paid for by corporate donors,’ the senator said he is against the legislation ‘because it makes no sense at all.’”

“You’re entitled to your own facts — I mean, your own opinions. You’re just not entitled to create your own facts to support it. And that’s exactly what they’re doing,” Manchin said.

Manchin has said he will not support a price tag of $3.5 trillion on the Democrats’ partisan infrastructure bill. 

Manchin told CNN he has concerns over the rush to push through the large spending package while the country is still struggling with inflation and jobless claims, even with a high number of job openings. He also noted that there is no telling what the future might bring — including threats from abroad, and the lingering COVID-19 pandemic. 

Manchin said, “The vulnerability that we have, Dana, right now we don’t know what happen with this [sic] Covid, it’s awful, coming back the way it is with a vengeance, we don’t know about inflation…and on top of that, the challenges we’re going to have, geopolitical challenges, shouldn’t we be prepared?” 

While Manchin was reluctant to put a number on what price he would support for the bill, according to an Axios report last week, Manchin told the Biden administration and leaders in Congress that he took issue with Biden’s spending plan of $3.5 trillion. 

Last week, Axios reported:

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.V.) has privately warned the White House and congressional leaders that he has specific policy concerns with President Biden’s $3.5 trillion social spending dream — and he’ll support as little as $1 trillion of it.

At most, he’s open to supporting $1.5 trillion, sources familiar with the discussions say.

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