Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) on Tuesday said he “absolutely” thinks Congress will quickly pass the legislation crafted by the White House and House GOP leadership to address the debt ceiling, even as the plan faces opposition on both sides.
“If you’re looking for a reason to be against something in Washington, you can always find something saying that wasn’t good enough, didn’t go far enough,” Manchin said during an appearance on West Virginia MetroNews’s “Talkline” with Hoppy Kercheval early Tuesday.
“The bottom line is we can not have the threat of a default for the sake of our economy,” Manchin said.
President Biden and Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) announced Saturday that they reached an agreement to raise the debt ceiling, along with several compromises on policies aimed at curbing spending. The breakthrough came after weeks of haggling.
As part of the bipartisan deal, they agreed to raise the debt limit for two years, beef up work requirements on certain federal assistance programs, impose budget caps and claw back billions in unobligated coronavirus funds.
The deal was met with some praise from lawmakers upon the initial announcement, but it has seen growing opposition from hard-line conservatives who say the measure doesn’t go far enough in cutting spending. Some progressives and other Democrats have also shown resistance to parts of the plan.
Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) came out against a Manchin-backed portion of the plan that would greenlight the Mountain Valley Pipeline in his state.
A spokesperson for the senator said in a statement that the move would bypass “the normal judicial and administrative review process every other energy project has to go through.”
“This provision is completely unrelated to the debt ceiling matter. He plans to file an amendment to remove this harmful Mountain Valley Pipeline provision,” the spokesperson added.
During his interview Tuesday, Manchin pushed back on Kaine’s comments.
“I respectfully disagree with him,” he said, arguing “there’s not been a pipeline that has ever been suggested or possibly built in America that has ever gone through the scrutiny that the MVP has.”
“The product is needed in America,” he added.