Sen. Joe Manchin, a Democrat from West Virginia, stated on Thursday that Democrats aren’t going to be reaching an agreement on the social spending bill “anytime soon,” despite negotiations continuing inside the party.
”This is not going to happen anytime soon, guys,” Manchin said to reporters on Thursday. ”They’re trying to get a meeting of the minds.”
Manchin then stated that Democrats are starting to make “good progress” on a deal.
”There’s a lot of details,” the West Virginia senator said. ”Until you see the text and the fine print, it’s pretty hard to make final decisions.”
Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, D-Ariz., and Manchin both met with White House officials on Thursday, but Sinema told CNN’s Manu Raju, when asked if a deal would be reached by Friday, ”Don’t ask me. I can’t answer that question,” adding that ”I don’t negotiate in the press” when pushed.advertisement — content continues below
Manchin added to Raju that ”everything is moving back and forth” when it comes to climate change, and said when asked if increasing revenue is the biggest hurdle that ”It’s hard money. Soft money should go to debt.”
Axios reports that in a closed-door meeting on Wednesday, Manchin and Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., had a heated argument over the spending plan.
According to Sen. Jon Tester, D-Mont., who chairs the Senate Appropriations subcommittee, there was ”a difference of opinion” over the bill.
”Joe said, ‘I’m comfortable with nothing.’ Bernie went on to say, adding, ‘We need to do three-and-a-half [trillion dollars].’ The truth, is both of them are in different spots.”
Manchin then reportedly stated, “I’m comfortable with zero.”
“Sen. Chris Coons, D-Del., who chairs the Senate Appropriations subcommittee on State and Foreign Operations, added that ‘There was a vigorous, 10-minute discussion. Bernie said, ‘$6 trillion, and Manchin said, ‘We shouldn’t do it at all,’ and added that ‘this will contribute to inflation. We’ve already passed the American Rescue Plan,'” the report noted.
”We should just pass the infrastructure bill and, you know, pause for six months,” Manchin proclaimed.