We Have A Number! Manchin Finally Makes His Opening Bid On Centerpiece Of Biden Agenda

WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 08: Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) heads to a vote in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol on June 8, 2021 in Washington, DC. The spotlight on Sen. Manchin grew even brighter after declaring that he will vote against the Democrats voting rights bill, the For the People Act, in his op-ed that was published in the Charleston Gazette-Mail over the weekend. (Photo by Samuel Corum/Getty Images)
Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) heads to a vote in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol on June 8, 2021. (Photo by Samuel Corum/Getty Images)
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September 8, 2021 8:05 a.m.

A lot of things happened. Here are some of the things.

Time To Strap In, Everyone

It finally came last evening, via anonymously sourced and carefully parsed reports. It wasn’t an official statement or another self-indulgent op-ed. But it appears at long last that Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) has made an opening bid on President Biden’s $3.5 trillion reconciliation package. The news came via reports in Axios and CNN.

  • Manchin is lowballing the White House and Democratic leaders: $1-1.5 trillion.
  • Manchin wants it all paid for with new revenue, which is effectively another limit on the size of the bill.
  • Reminder: This is a negotiation! The final numbers won’t be as big as Bernie Sanders wants or as small as Manchin wants.
  • The devil will still be in the details: the revenue generators, the spending commitments, and the initiatives that get taken off the table entirely.

For his part, Biden doesn’t seem too worried about Manchin’s resistance to the bill, telling reporters yesterday that “Joe, at the end, has always been there” and that “I think we can work something out.”

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  • The president also doubled down on his and Democratic leadership’s two-track plan for the bipartisan bill and budget reconciliation despite Manchin’s demand for a “pause” on passing reconciliation. “I’m comfortable with proceeding with the way we’ve been proceeding so far,” Biden said.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) also shrugged off Manchin’s demand for a “pause” on pass the budget reconciliation bill yesterday:

Key Analysis

“How Democrats can make it harder for centrists to downsize Biden’s agenda” – Greg Sargent at the Washington Post

Did You Know That Corporate Activism Is Meaningless?

Judd Legum and Tesnim Zekeria of Popular Information gathered a detailed list of corporations that have donated to the Texas lawmakers behind the anti-abortion law while simultaneously claiming to support “women’s empowerment” and “gender equity.”

​​Abbott Says Rape Is Bad

Asked how Texas women and girls can be forced to carry a pregnancy caused by rape or incest to term under the state’s new anti-abortion law, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) reaffirmed that rape “is a crime” and that his state “will work tirelessly to make sure that we eliminate all rapists from the streets of Texas by aggressively going out and arresting them and prosecuting them and getting them off the streets.”

Trump Is Holding Rallies Again

Here we go again: As he teases the possibility of a 2024 bid, the ex-president will be holding a rally in Des Moines, Iowa on Saturday, Oct. 9, his Save America PAC announced.

  • He’ll also have a rally in Perry, Georgia on Sept. 9.

California Recall Is Looking Less Grim For Newsom

There’s now a 10-digit gap between keeping Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) and having him removed from office amid the looming recall vote on Sept. 17, according to polling averages reported by FiveThirtyEight.

  • 52 percent say Newsom ought to stay in office, while 42 percent support his removal.
  • Biden is expected to stump for the California governor sometime next week, according to White House press secretary Jen Psaki.

People Are Souring On The CDC

41 percent of Americans say the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention hasn’t communicated a clear plan of action against COVID-19, while only 32 percent agree the agency has communicated a plan, according to a new Gallup poll.

More Like Robert E. Please Leave

A 12-ton statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee in Richmond, Virginia is slated to be removed today.

  • It will be cut in half and partially shipped to a women’s prison in Goochland, Virginia, according to local news outlet WRIC.
  • The removal is apparently expected to be some sort of public affair: People will be allowed to watch the statue get taken down this morning, and Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam’s (D) office will livestream the event for those who can’t see it in person.
  • Plans for the statue’s removal were set in motion last year amid protests over the death of George Floyd.

McCarthy Sends Chick-fil-A To Capitol Police For Some Reason

In the middle of fighting tooth and nail against getting to the bottom of the Jan. 6 insurrection that led to major injuries among law enforcement, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) sent some fried chicken to the U.S. Capitol Police yesterday thanking them “for all that you do!”

The letter didn’t elaborate on that point, and people are pretty confused about the purpose of this gesture from the guy who keeps supporting Trump’s efforts to bury the events of Jan. 6:

I’m Going To Post Cat Content And You Can’t Stop Me

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