In defense of Joe Manchin

I can’t quite bring myself to see Joe Manchin as a villain.

Yes, it would be great if the Democratic senator from West Virginia was more progressive. It’s aggravating that he slow-walked the COVID-19 relief bill last week in order to find some accommodation with Republicans. (Predictably, cooperation was not forthcoming, but his efforts ended up lowering the weekly unemployment benefit by $100 a week.) It’s frustrating that he favors an $11 minimum wage instead of the $15 that most Democrats are seeking. It’s really discouraging that he has repeatedly pronounced himself dead set against ending the filibuster that stands in the way of so many of his party’s legislative goals.


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