Manchin: “This place sucks.” (But he’ll run anyway.)
From the New York Times:
Senator Joe Manchin III of West Virginia told colleagues on Tuesday that he intended to run for re-election this year after all, ending an anxiety-making flirtation with retirement and easing Democratic fears that the most conservative Democrat in the Senate was about to effectively hand his seat to a Republican.
In an interview, Mr. Manchin said he repeatedly expressed his frustration to Senator Chuck Schumer of New York, the Democratic leader, and other colleagues, telling them that “this place sucks,” before finally signaling Tuesday morning to Mr. Schumer’s aides that he would file his re-election paperwork before West Virginia’s deadline on Saturday.
Manchin votes to approve Azar at HHS
On Tuesday, Manchin was one of seven Democrats who voted to approve Alex Azar to head the Department of Health and Human Services. The former Eli Lily executive has conservative views on most of the issues in this area, but the senator believes that won’t affect his work. According to TPM:
Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV), one of several Democrats pledging to vote for Azar, told TPM on Tuesday that even if he holds conservative views on contraception and abortion access, he believes it won’t heavily influence his work.
“I think we can move him on that,” Manchin said. “Trust me, I have enough faith that the good women who work at HHS can bring some common sense to him in his thought process.”
Manchin channels his inner Donald (from earlier today on CNN)
On building the wall
From The Daily Caller:
“We have to have border security,” Manchin said. “We know that. So if the president calls it a border wall, we do need a wall. We need to repair some wall. We need build some new wall. We need other technologies too.”
On trusting Trump on DACA
From The Hill:
Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) said on Wednesday he believes President Trump wants to find a solution to help "Dreamers" who could face deportation because of Trump's decision to end an Obama-era program sheltering them.
"My gut tells me the president wants to get this done," Manchin told CNN's Chris Cuomo on "New Day."
"I can tell you sincerely he believes these children need a pathway forward. He's sympathetic towards that. Now, there might be people around him that aren't quite as sympathetic as he is," he said.
Let’s see. Manchin voted to confirm someone who likely believes in “fetal personhood” among other very conservative views, he’s willing to go along with Trump on his wall-building, and he believes that Trump really wants to help the Dreamers. As a Democrat, I know there are good reasons to be relieved that Joe has decided to seek re-election but right now I’m having trouble thinking of any.