Even after Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) effectively killed Democrats’ hopes of passing President Joe Biden’s $1.75 trillion spending package on Sunday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) tried to keep the administration’s dream alive by offering a little hope that the Build Back Better (BBB) plan could still make it to the president’s desk.
In a press release following Manchin’s comments on “Fox News Sunday,” Pelosi said she was disappointed that BBB will not be passed by the end of the year, but she is still hopeful that Democrats could reach an agreement by next year. “First and foremost, our work For The People demands that we stay at the table to pass the Build Back Better Act,” she said in a statement. “While it is disappointing that we may not have a law by the end of the year, we are hopeful that we will soon reach agreement so that this vital legislation can pass as soon as possible next year.”
During an interview with Bret Baier on “Fox News Sunday,” Manchin said he could not support the trillion-dollar Democrat spending package. “I’ve done everything humanly possible. And you know my concerns I had, and I still have these concerns,” he said in the interview.
Later, Manchin added, “If I can’t go home and explain it to the people of West Virginia, I can’t vote for it, and I cannot vote to continue with this piece of legislation. I just can’t. I’ve tried everything humanly possible, I can’t get there.”
Republicans have stood united against this legislation in the Senate, forcing Democrats to convince all of their members to vote for the package, a task the party could not accomplish. Some Republicans have stood beside Manchin and even praised him for standing his ground.
“President Biden’s mega-spending bill is dead and Joe Manchin put the nail in the coffin,” Sen. Ben Sasse (R-NE) said on Sunday. “This should be a reality check to wild-eyed progressives that they are not the mainstream: With a divided country, a 50-50 Senate, and blowout inflation, the American people don’t want to upend this country with nakedly-partisan legislation.”
Texas Republican Rep. Dan Crenshaw also celebrated Manchin’s decision to vote “no,” tweeting that “America has dodged a serious bullet.”
BREAKING: Joe Manchin on Build Back Better: “This is a no on this legislation.”
America has a dodged a serious bullet. BBB is dead.
— Dan Crenshaw (@DanCrenshawTX) December 19, 2021
Republicans aren’t the only ones considering BBB to be dead. Washington Post opinion writer Jennifer Rubin said that Manchin’s opposition to BBB means “Biden is dead” and “democracy is hanging by a thread.”
If Manchin is no on both BBB and voting, Biden is done. Democracy is hanging by a thread. Hard to think of anyone more destructive
— Jennifer ‘pro-voting’ Rubin (@JRubinBlogger) December 19, 2021
While many consider BBB now dead, Pelosi is attempting to stay optimistic about the huge spending package’s potential passage. In her press release, she emphasized all of the provisions included in BBB – provisions such as a child tax credit, universal pre-K, and an expansion of health care. She even promoted the false claim that BBB is “cost-cutting” and “inflation-saving.”
Pelosi continued her statement by focusing on how Democrats will be the “path forward” for BBB. “This winter, we continue to battle the COVID pandemic. The daunting Omicron variant poses a threat to Americans’ health and financial security. Now more than ever, families need the support of Build Back Better. Democrats have long been proud champions of America’s working families. For them, Democrats Deliver!”
She concluded by promising that Democrats “intend to Build Back Better and enshrine President Biden’s spectacular vision for the future into law.”