- Sens. Manchin and Sanders on Wednesday dealt with Democrats’ bill for social spending.
- Sanders on Wednesday charged Sens. Manchin and Sinema for “sabotage”.
- Manchin and Sinema are the only Senate Democrats in opposition to the $ 3.5 trillion package.
Senator Joe Manchin fired back at Senator Bernie Sanders on Wednesday after Sanders held a burning press conference calling Manchin and Senator Krysten Sinema’s “vague” opposition to the Democrats’ law on social spending.
“My number has been $ 1.5 trillion. I’ve been very clear,” Manchin told pool reporters.
“I have been very clear when it comes to who we are as a society, who we are as a nation,” Manchin added. “I do not believe we should make our society a just society. I think we should still be a compassionate, rewarding society.”
Manchin added that he and Sanders “share very different policies and political beliefs.”
Earlier at a news conference on Wednesday, Sanders paralyzed Sinema and Manchin, saying “two people have no right to sabotage what 48 wants, what the US president wants.”
Sanders was critical of Manchin’s $ 1.5 trillion ceiling on social spending bills, reiterating that $ 3.5 trillion was the consensus among Democrats.
“Is protecting working families and reducing childhood poverty a ‘justification?'” Sanders asked.
As it stands, the Democrats’ $ 3.5 trillion budget extension package would expand Medicare to cover dentistry and vision along with hearing aids and extend $ 300 direct child tax payments until 2025.
“Does Sen. Manchin really think that seniors do not have the right to digest their food and that they do not have the right to hear and see properly?” Said Sanders. “Is it really too much to ask in the richest country on earth – that older people have teeth in their mouths and can see and hear?”
Sanders also urged Sinema for its “ambiguity” and refusal to publicly commit to a figure for the bill or state what provisions she disagrees with.
“Sen. Sinema’s position is that she is not negotiating in public. I do not know what that means, I do not know where she is coming from,” Sanders said.
“Tell us what you want,” Sanders said, speaking to Sens. Manchin and Sinema.