It’s a sad state of affairs when a Fox News host seems more concerned about Republican obstructionism than Democratic Senator Joe Manchin.
In his Fox News Sunday interview with Manchin today, host Chris Wallace began a discussion about the filibuster by challenging Manchin’s claim that it’s a tool of bipartisanship and suggested it’s the exact opposite:
WALLACE: You say you hope that [keeping the filibuster] will bring the parties together. The question I have is whether or not you're doing it exactly the wrong way. And hear me out on this. If you were to keep the idea that maybe you would vote to kill the filibuster, wouldn't that give Republicans an incentive to actually negotiate, because old Joe Manchin is out there and who knows what he's going to do? By taking it off the table, haven't you empowered Republicans to be obstructionist?
MANCHIN: I don't think so because we have seven brave Republicans that continue to vote for what they know is right and the facts as they see them, not worrying about the political consequences. I believe there's a lot more of my Republican colleagues and friends that feel the same way. I'm just hoping they are able to rise to the occasion to defend our country and support our country and make sure that we have a democracy for this republic of all the people.
But with a 50/50 senate, Manchin needs 10 “brave Republicans,” not seven, to overcome a filibuster.
Wallace kept pushing.
WALLACE: I mean let's just take the nine -- the idea of creating a 9/11 commission to investigate the January 6th insurrection at the Capitol. Republicans blocked that. Senator McConnell, the head of the Republicans in the Senate, says that he's 100 percent focused on blocking the Biden agenda. Question, aren't you being naive about this continuing talk about bipartisan cooperation?
MANCHIN: I'm not being naive. I think he's 100 percent wrong in trying to block all the good things that we're trying to do for America. It would be a lot better if we had participation. And we're getting participation. But when it comes time to final vote, I disagree with -- with Leader McConnell on this and minority leader on this issue that he puts politics before the policies that I think we need for our country.
I'm going to continue to keep working with my bipartisan friends and hopefully we can get more of them.
Manchin suggested he based at least part of his decision on the fact that after Democratic Sen. Harry Reid did away with the filibuster for federal district and circuit judges when he was the majority leader, Sen. Mitch McConnell did away with the filibuster for Supreme Court nominations.“ What goes around comes around,” Manchin said.
I understand his point. But the problem is, he hasn’t come up with any alternative to counter the GOP obstructionism. And in the meanwhile, none of Biden’s popular agenda is going anywhere.
You can watch the discussion below, from the June 6, 2021 Fox News Sunday.