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Posted at 12:31 PM ET, 03/ 8/2011

Democratic Sen. Manchin slams Obama's leadership on funding resolution

By Felicia Sonmez

West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin (D) criticized President Obama in a floor speech Tuesday, taking issue with the president's leadership in negotiations on to keep the federal government funded through September.

"The truth of the matter is that this debate, as important as it is, will not be decided by House Republicans and Senate Democrats negotiating with each other -- or past each other," Manchin said. "This debate will be decided when the president leads these tough negotiations. And, right now, that is not happening."

Manchin said he will oppose the funding measures from both Senate Democrats and House Republicans plan when they come up for votes in the Senate later Tuesday or on Wednesday. He said the Senate Democrats' plan does not cut enough and slammed the House Republican plan as an "even more flawed measure" that "blindly hacks the budget."

"Democrats and Republicans are being asked to vote on wildly different proposals for reining in spending," Manchin said. "Republicans will say Democrats don't go far enough ... Democrats will say Republicans go too far. The truth is, both are right, and both proposals will fail. Worse still, everyone in Congress knows they will fail."

Manchin's remarks marked the latest instance in which he has positioned himself at odds with his party's leadership. A freshman who directly took aim at national Democrats during his campaign, Manchin was the only Democratic senator during last year's lame-duck session to vote against a procedural measure to repeal the military's "don't ask, don't tell" law. He also voted against a proposal that would have extended the Bush-era tax cuts only for the middle class.

The Republican Senate campaign committee charged that Manchin's speech was a "transparent political maneuver" and noted that Manchin voted against repealing the national health care law.

"If West Virginians want to know where Joe Manchin actually stands, they need look no further than his rubber-stamp support for each and every one of President Obama's liberal spending schemes," said Chris Bond, press secretary for the National Republican Senatorial Committee Press.

By Felicia Sonmez  | March 8, 2011; 12:31 PM ET
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Chris Bond, non-sequitor secretary for the National Republican Senatorial Committee Press.

Posted by: veritasinmedium | March 8, 2011 1:34 PM | Report abuse

Come on, Joe. The Constitution says appropriations bills originate in the House of Representatives. If the majority in the House is solidly behind a Leader (?) determined not to negotiate, there is no way a President can influence legislation, except in an election year. It's up to you House Democrats to do whatever negotiating you can.

The Republicans will be willing to negotiate plenty - next year.

Posted by: loyalsyst | March 8, 2011 1:37 PM | Report abuse

Hey Joe, just make sure you vote for Reid's bill to include funding for his Nevada Cowboy Poet convention...GOP is just soo mean spirited for trying to cut funding for this clown fest!

Posted by: mjandrews8 | March 9, 2011 7:40 AM | Report abuse

If Obama agreed with everything the GOP wanted then he'd be a republican. Joe, since you have never been a US President then you'd be a great authority on what one should do.

For the first 2 years of this administration the GOP led by sitting on their hands. Leadership? Where was the GOP when Bush was running the country in debt. Wars, in part, have bankrupt this country and the GOP never saw a global conflict that was not ripe for Democracy.

Just last week the GOP said Obama was not doing enough in Libya.

Guess we are ready to handle 3 wars simulatenously! That will help balance the budget and get appropriations passed.

Posted by: dcchamp1 | March 9, 2011 8:34 AM | Report abuse


A hillbilly from West Virginia who couldn't lead a latrine detail questioning someone's leadership

Posted by: bigmac1810 | March 9, 2011 8:43 AM | Report abuse

West Virginia is one the top benficiaries of federal pork projects. Joe will be singing a different tune when those job cuts cross the border to West Virginia.

This man's hypocrisy is simply astounding!

Posted by: | March 9, 2011 9:02 AM | Report abuse

So,why are the Obamabot Democrats always so
defensive and hostile whenever anyone dares
to even question their great glorius leader,THE ONE,Muslim in Chief & Messiah Empty Suit Barack Hussein Obama? Oh probably it's because they cannot stand to
hear anyone tell the truth about the Worst
President of all time,Barack Hussein Obama!

Posted by: Jan1977 | March 9, 2011 11:01 AM | Report abuse

The thing that bothers me is that when George W. Bush was Commander and Chief and the things that went on in his administration not one man on Capital Hill stood up to him when he made stupid decisions about the future of this country.

All of a sudden when a Black man become President of this racialist country his decisons and ideals are bad choices. Well they can't be no more worst than the decisions made by Congress and the Senate.

I have found out that some American people are happy when America is broken, and when someone comes along trying to fix it they find everything under sun to complain about it.

Posted by: dtyler | March 9, 2011 11:37 AM | Report abuse

It's all about posturing for re-election. No substance here or anywhere in Congress.

Posted by: frodot | March 9, 2011 12:11 PM | Report abuse

What are you running for , Joe?

Posted by: jckdoors | March 9, 2011 12:18 PM | Report abuse

Manchin has a flipping point! Dems are tasked with cutting very little and Reps with cutting as much as possible. Unfortunately, Obama is going to side with the cutting very little and tacking on some more debt.

Were screwed. We will not get the cuts we need.

Posted by: hebe1 | March 9, 2011 12:22 PM | Report abuse

The Dems should just tell Manchin to take a hike. Let WV go 100-percent Repuke. The state is a dung heap.

Posted by: Observer691 | March 9, 2011 1:03 PM | Report abuse

I'm not against Senators or Reps having different opinions but come on Manchin. People want a democrat to be a democrat, not a democrat that pretends to be a republican.
Apparently he forgets that the President proposes laws and actions he would like to see enacted and Congress crafts and approves legislation.
Don't just posture and call the President out. Why don't you try being a leader and come up with your own solution instead of blaming someone else for not leading you, how weak does that sound....

Posted by: priceisright | March 9, 2011 3:07 PM | Report abuse

What we need since the budget commission didn't work is a bipartisan budget czar. Someone to make the tough decisions on cutting and taxes. Wow maybe we don't need a President but a National Czar, someone not elected who doesn't have to answer to anyone. Yea, yea, that's the ticket.

Posted by: tateofpa | March 9, 2011 4:15 PM | Report abuse

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