Republican Senator Pat Toomey claims Dems brought Joe Manchin to the Cleaners over the Agenda Act

Senator Pat Toomey (R-PA) on Sunday had no kind words for Democratic Senator Joe Manchin’s surprise decision to back a reconciliation bill designed to revitalize Democrats’ domestic political agenda.

“It really looks to me like Joe Manchin was taken to the dry cleaners,” Toomey told CNN’s Jake Tapper state of the nation, Attack on the bill’s provisions on corporate taxes, healthcare subsidies and climate protection funds.

“And what does Joe get for it? He gets a promise that one day in the future they will pass some kind of law on energy infrastructure,” he said. “So this is a disaster. This will make our recession worse. That will make inflation worse. It won’t do any good. I’m really surprised that Joe agreed to that.”

Toomey’s criticism echoed that of some of his Republican peers after Manchin last week revealed his surprise support for the Inflation Reduction Act, a $700 billion bill that in part cuts some of President Joe Biden’s top domestic priorities on climate and finances the corporate tax rate. Some within the GOP, working with Democrats on a semiconductor bill, unaware it was coming, likened it to a treason.

“How can we negotiate in good faith, compromise where necessary and get things done together after the Majority Leader and the West Virginia Senator pulled such a stunt?” Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) was furious in the Senate Thursday. “To look you in the eye and tell you one thing and do the other is absolutely unforgivable.”

Toomey also defended his party’s response to the law, saying its climate provisions in particular didn’t do much to combat climate change, although some of the most moderate Democrats – like rural neighboring MP Abigail Spanberger (D-VA) – have publicly supported the Invoice.

“What will it do if a few more rich people buy Teslas? It won’t do anything,” Toomey said. “What we need is a strong economy and the ability to find the innovation and technology that will allow us to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere on a large commercial scale. But these gestures – they may feel good, but they are not an achievement.”

Elsewhere in the interview, Toomey chided Democrats — and comedian Jon Stewart — for their intense push for a Veterans Assistance Act that Republicans blocked after initially backing it.

“It’s the oldest trick in Washington,” Toomey claimed. “People take a sympathetic group of Americans — and it could be kids with an illness, it could be victims of crime, it could be veterans who have been exposed to toxic chemicals — come up with a bill to address their problems, and then sneak out something totally independent of the fact that they know they could never pass it on alone, and dare Republicans to do anything about it, knowing they will unleash their media allies and maybe a pseudo-celebrity to fabricating false accusations to try and get us to just swallow what shouldn’t be there.”

The element Toomey was referring to was how the funds would be allocated, particularly since the funds would be placed under a “mandatory expenditure” provision. That provision was intact when the bill originally passed the Senate 84:14. Republican Senator Pat Toomey claims Dems brought Joe Manchin to the Cleaners over the Agenda Act


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