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Former President Donald Trump vowed Friday to campaign in West Virginia against Sen. Joe Manchin over the Democrats’ $739 billion tax hike and climate change deal.
Trump said Manchin and Democratic Sen. Kirsten Sinema of Arizona, both running for re-election in 2024, would pay a heavy political price for agreeing to support the deal after previously withdrawing their support.
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“What happened to Manchin and Cinema, what the hell happened, where did this new philosophy come from,” Trump said during a speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Texas. “I think if this deal goes through, they’re both going to lose the next election, I think West Virginia and Arizona are not going to support what they’ve done to them.”
The former president’s remarks came as the Senate debated the massive spending measure. Written by Democrats, the legislation raises taxes by $739 billion over the next decade.
Most of the money, nearly $440 billion, is to go towards climate change subsidies in hopes of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 40% by 2030.
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Given widespread GOP opposition, Manchin and Sinema’s support for the bill is key because Democrats plan to push it through a 50-50 Senate vote using a party-line process known as budget reconciliation.
“Maybe this speech can stop them, because when Manchin hears me say he’s going to lose West Virginia,” Trump said. “I will come down [there] and campaign against him as hard as one can.’
Democrats proposed the Manchin-Schumer bill as a salve for inflation. They argue it will lower electricity bills through new climate change subsidies and limit the amount of money older Americans pay out-of-pocket for bailouts prescription drugs.
“It’s a bill for America,” Manchin said after agreeing to the deal. “We have an opportunity to lower the cost of drugs for the elderly, lower [Obamacare] health care premiums, increase our energy security, and invest in energy technologies — all while reducing our national debt.”
Trump, who won West Virginia by nearly 40 percentage points in 2020, argued otherwise, saying the bill’s tax provisions were “rehabilitation.” The former president also questioned Manchin’s credibility, claiming the West Virginia Democrat had previously fought impeachment.
“I got along incredibly well with him, he called me all the time,” Trump said. “When the impeachment farce began [Manchin] he said: “I would never vote for you, you are a great president.”
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“Then when we counted the numbers … he voted against me,” Trump said.