Manchin, Senate Watergate Committee, Joe Manchin discussed on Here and Now


A pardon? He told me. But was this a first, the president was telling his top aides, they could commit perjury before the Senate Watergate committee, and count on a pardon. Politics and pardons on the next reveal. Saturday afternoon at one. On 90.1. From NPR and WBUR, I'm Scott Tong in Washington, D.C.. And I'm Tanya Moseley and Culver City, California. This is here and now. A fist bump, not a handshake, was how President Biden greeted Muhammad bil Salman today. He's the Saudi prince who U.S. intelligence says, ordered the 2018 murder of Washington Post columnist Jamal shark Khashoggi. Biden is under pressure to speak up about the murder. He also needs Saudi to help bring down fuel prices. And back home the president has other challenges. It may be game over for big pieces of his legislative agenda, notably climate change. So it's time now for our Friday round table. We have reclined ABC News political director hey Rick. Great to be with you. Thanks for having me. And Francesca chambers is with us. White House correspondent at USA Today. Francesca happy Friday. Thank you. Always a pleasure. And let's talk once again about Joe Manchin. This morning the critical centrist democratic senator said he's a no vote on an economic bill that includes spending on climate change proposals, Manchin is of course from a coal state, West Virginia. Here is this morning on West Virginia metro news radio. Inflation is absolutely killing many, many people. They can't buy gasoline. I have a hard time buying groceries. Everything they buy and consume for their daily lives is a hardship to them and can't we wait to make sure that we do nothing to add to that. Francesca for the president's agenda, we know the clock is ticking down to the midterms. How big a blow is this? Well, it's not just ticking down to the midterms, it's ticking down to an August recess that comes in about three weeks and Democrats have many things that they had hoped to get done during that time. Things that they thought would help with voters to get them out to the polls as you were asking about. And this was a major one. The White House now saying that they're not going to negotiate in public when asked about it today on the flight to Saudi Arabia, which is consistently been their position, but Manchin has been quite clear if inflation is high. He wouldn't vote for this and now this may be the final blow considering Democrats just won't have time to consider to continue negotiating with Manchin. Yeah. And Rick, let's just step back on this on this issue. Ron wyden, the liberal democratic senator from Oregon said, this was the last chance to prevent the most catastrophic and costly effects of climate change. I mean, could this issue fall off the table for years? Scientists, of course, say we need to address this yesterday. I think Democrats are likely to lose control of at least the house if not the house of the Senate. And in that sense, it's not going to be a front burner issue. But that's another way of looking at this. Is that Joe Manchin is being vilified right now for his role in this? And I think he deserves whatever degree of blame you assigned to it based on your beliefs on this. That said, what he is saying is not something that is foreign to the ears of many American workers out there who are struggling that would rather see an emphasis on energy production that gets at gas prices right now than climate change. And that are concerned about runaway inflation. And the idea that more spending right now is the solution is not something that's going to sell very widely. So I've been struck by there are some progressive Democrats who this week with the inflation report coming out and saying, this is unacceptable. We need to do something about this. They almost sounded like they were the party out of power rather than the party in power. And Joe Manchin, in one way, he feels like he is saving Democrats from themselves, particularly given the 9.1% inflation. That was the cause of his fresh concerns. He is signaled his position for some time now. Rick, really quickly, can you briefly share what is left in and out of this bill? Well, this takes out really anything you were going to do around climate change. What's left is potentially some areas to try to bring down drug prices, some potentially potentially some areas to address tax reform. But it's very minor, very narrow compared to the hundreds of billions that was initially proposed and that still was seen as a possibility. All year, the Democrats have spent two years now. Year and a half, trying to get Manchin and sinema on board. Manchin saying that he won't be on board for anything that increases inflation by additional spending, and also the climate provisions. It's a major blow to what's left of the Biden domestic agenda. Let's bring up another major topic for this week. Francesca, I want to ask you about abortion. In Congress Democrats are trying to protect abortion rights three weeks after we know the Supreme Court overturned roe V wade. But Republicans blocked a bill that would have helped persons cross state lines to get abortions. And they were slammed by democratic senator patty Murray. Let's listen. There is already legislation introduced in Missouri to ban abortion travel. Anyone telling

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