Keep nope alive

No sooner had I posted “The Manchin proviso” yesterday morning than Politico sent out notice that it had posted the Manchin/Schumer memo dated July 28, 2021. I have uploaded the memo to Scribd and embedded it at the bottom of this post. It is a weird document that is beyond my poor powers to explicate.

Signed by Senator Manchin and Majority Leader Schumer, the memo purports to set forth Manchin’s conditions to support the Democrats’ dystopian Reconciliation bill. Manchin sets his “topline” number on the spending spree at $1.5 trillion. In a New York Post opinion column this morning, Manhattan Institute senior fellow Brian Riedl comments: “Only in Leftieland is $1.5 trillion considered a ‘compromise.’” (Manchin makes the Post cover, at right.)

Manchin also specified that debate was on the bill was to begin no earlier than October. Today is the big day. Is this what Senator Manchin denominated “a strategic pause” in his September 2 Wall Street Journal column? A month?

Missing from the memo, by the way, is any mention of the Hyde Amendment. NR’s John McCormack took this issue up with Senator Manchin on September 29.

The memo further set forth “spending conditions” and “offsets conditions.” However, the document concludes in bold text: “Senator Manchin does not guarantee that he will vote for the final reconciliation legislation if it exceeds the conditions outlined in this agreement.” Manchin is keeping his options open.

I have no confidence in my judgment of Manchin. I think my comments on him reflect fear and loathing of the leftist dystopia packed into the Reconciliation nightmare.

The New York Sun posted Larry Kudlow’s FOX Business News editorial “Reconciliation Bill, as We Know It, Is Dead, Thanks To Senators Manchin, McConnell — and Schumer.” I fear that this is overoptimistic.

So far, however, not all is proceeding as foreseen by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Referring to Pelosi’s change of plans, Byron York declares that “The Dem cave begins.” Pelosi wanted to jam through the trillion dollar so-called infrastructure bill already passed by the Senate was to be jammed through the House last night. It didn’t happen. The Post reports that Pelosi pulled the bill from the promised House vote. There will be further developments today.

For the state of play as of this morning, I refer readers to stories here (Associated Press, posted early this morning), here (New York Post), and here (Politico).

Today is a good day to take advantage of the sites reporting for the politically obsessive. This morning’s Politico Playbook edition has just been posted here. Politico Huddle has just been posted here. The Axios AM email update quotes Squad member Rep. Cori Bush speaking on CNN yesterday after Manchin declared publicly that he favors a $1.5 trillion tab on the big bill — less than half of the proposed $3.5 trillion: “The compromise was the $3.5 trillion…It is unconscionable that he can stand puffed up and…say: ‘I’ll toss you some crumbs right now, and then hopefully you can say you ate.'” They are nuts. Pelosi deserves them and I am afraid she knows how to deal with them.

Axios quotes Manchin’s comments yesterday here (“Manchin said that if progressive Democrats want a higher number, they should ‘elect more liberals’”). It separately seeks to read Kyrsten Sinema here.

There is more to come. I would like to say keep nope alive.

Manchin-Schumer memo by Scott Johnson on Scribd

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