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Joe Manchin Tag

According to a report published by Politico, Senator Jeff Flake (R-AZ) chose to appear pressured when, in fact, he masterminded the latest Kavanaugh delay. His subsequent media statements about his motivations and his media appearances in light of this report suggest Flake's true motivations are far less pure than he would have us believe. Flake's focus on optics, on his raw ambition (for 2020?), and on the kind of "swamp creature" political maneuvering surrounding this planned reversal paints for the American people a hideous and disturbing portrait of the Arizona senator.

The Cook Political Report changed its ratings in three Senate races, including Texas. The map still tends to favor the GOP keeping its majority, but it's looking like incumbent Democrats Joe Tester from Montana and Joe Manchin from West Virginia will keep their seats. However, incumbent Republican Ted Cruz from Texas is in slight trouble as his race now has the label Toss-Up.

Andrew Wheeler, the acting head of the EPA, signed a proposal that will undo President Barack Obama's Clean Power Plan and establish new rules for coal plants. From The Washington Examiner:
The Environmental Protection Agency on Tuesday morning released its plan, renamed the “Affordable Clean Energy Rule,” that the agency said would provide $400 million in annual benefits, while reducing carbon emission levels by up to 1.5 percent by 2030. President Trump is expected to tout the new rule at a rally in coal-friendly West Virginia Tuesday night.

The GOP has a one-seat majority in the Senate, which would make one think the Democrats have a real shot at claiming the majority in the upcoming midterm elections. But, the latest poll from Axios/SurveyMonkey shows a Senate Democrat majority is not likely. Axios' numbers have two Democrats winning in red states, but three Democrat incumbent Senators in danger of losing.

Former convict and coal CEO Don Blankenship plans to run as the Constitution Party nominee for the West Virginia senate. He will have to challenge the state's "sore loser" law, which "prevents failed candidates in a main-party primary from refiling to run in the general election under another party's banner." If Blankenship successfully runs as a third-party candidate, the GOP might be in for a bit of a challenge especially as they have a real chance to unseat incumbent Democrat Sen. Joe Manchin.

Democratic Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia apparently isn't hopping on the Koch Obsession bandwagon with some of his colleagues. When asked in a FOX News interview whether he thinks it helps or hurts the cause for the country and for Congress when Harry Reid continually brings up the Koch brothers, Manchin was critical of the recent rhetoric and didn't seem to think it did anything to help in moving the country forward.
If you're trying to rally the base, the bases have already been rallied, the right and the left base has been rallied. It's us in the middle that have to start making something happen here in Washington to move this country forward. People want jobs. You don’t beat up people. I mean, I don’t agree with their [the Kochs'] politics or philosophically, but, you know, they’re Americans, they're doing...paying their taxes, they’re not breaking the law. They’re providing jobs. Right, wrong or indifferent, whether you like their politics or not, there's people who don't like the extreme Democrat politics or extreme Republican politics. We've got to start being Americans again.

As reported by the Beckley, West Virginia Register-Herald, Joe Manchin said he would vote to repeal Obamacare. That quote (below) has received a lot of attention, but in context it's not at all clear that Manchin was doing anything other than playing both sides of the fence because he also said he supports fixing Obamacare (emphasis added):
Although Sen. Joe Manchin had planned to discuss the Charleston-area chemical spill and his recent piece of legislation the Chemical Safety and Drinking Water Protection Act of 2014, he instead turned his focus on a hodgepodge of topics, including minimum wage, balancing the nation’s budget and health-care issues.... He asked for all the listeners to let him and other lawmakers know their thoughts on the variety of topics, including the Affordable Care Act. “We spend more on health care than any state, but we rank 43rd on wellness and longevity.” Both parties agree on many aspects of the ACA, such as pre-existing conditions not being excluded from coverage and no lifetime caps, but there are still many kinks that need to be fixed, Manchin said. “I will vote tomorrow to repeal (the ACA), but I want to fix the problems in it.” He said the ACA is essentially a product and the government needs to find a way to “sell it” and make their customers want to buy it.
As Ed Morrissey points out, there isn't even a Senate bill coming to vote "tomorrow" (i.e., today), so it's not clear about what Manchin is talking. Manchin has warned before about a "complete meltdown" of Obamacare:
The West Virginia Democratic senator said Sunday that the federal health-care law could be headed for a "complete meltdown" if costs rise too fast and individuals are not happy with their coverage.
From this vague and unclear statement, it appears Manchin is doing nothing more than criticizing Obamacare in order to save it. Here's video from August 2013 in which Manchin argues to save Obamacare through changes:
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