Senator Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) is a “Blue Dog” Democrat out of political necessity. He is the lone Democrat representing his state in Washington, D.C., and could be one of the most powerful people in Congress because of the evenly divided Senate. To move any radical legislation requiring a simple majority vote, Manchin must vote yes to allow Vice President Kamala Harris to break the tie.
Arizona’s Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.), who represents thoroughly purple Arizona, is in a similar political bind. She walks a fine line to avoid alienating her progressive base while not appearing so radical that moderates and independents seek a different option. Democrats also require her vote on a simple majority measure.
Sinema was a leader during the recent bipartisan “infrastructure” bill negotiations. Manchin and 19 Republicans provided their votes to pass over a trillion in spending. The legislation adds $2900 per household to the national debt, which already costs each household $220,000.
West Virginia and Arizona voters are sure to be excited by massive investments in electric vehicle charging stations and green energy production. The legislation allocates substantial funds towards mass transit, which only benefits large urban areas. The bill also enables an anti-car agenda, funding “traffic calming” programs and paving the way to a per-mile tax.
A formula will no longer govern the allocation of Department of Transportation funds. Secretary Pete Buttigieg will have control over the distribution of billions in grants. It is doubtful the choo-choo train fanboy will be too concerned with surface roads in rural and exurban America. Allowing too many more progressives priorities through could hurt Sinema and Manchin at the ballot box.- READ MORE