A breakdown in the relationship between Democratic Senator Joe Manchin and the White House has led to the withdrawal of the $1.8 trillion spending offer he proposed to the White House in late 2021, the Washington Post reported on Saturday.
This week, Manchin told reporters he was no longer involved in White House discussions and has been privately expressing his disinterest in any legislation like President Biden’s Build Back Better Package, a newspaper reported, citing three sources with knowledge of the discussion. A request for comment from Manchin’s office was not immediately responded to.
A signature priority of Biden’s is the legislation. In a Senate evenly divided, Manchin’s vote is crucial. As the Democratic Party scrambled to find a way to revive Build Back Better, the opposition tore into the package in December, drawing the ire of progressives from that party.
Funding is included for issues that are of high importance to many Americans, including making preschool free, covering skyrocketing childcare costs, and expanding free school meals.
It was reported by the Washington Post that Manchin has spoken with a range of officials and others concerning the legislation, including White House aide Steve Ricchetti, former Trump economic adviser Larry Kudlow, and Republican Senator Mitt Romney of Utah.