McConnell Says GOP ‘Welcome’ Manchin in the Party ‘If He Was So Inclined’
© AP Photo / Caroline BrehmanSenate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Ky., pauses during a news conference with other Senate Republicans on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Dec. 15, 2020.
© AP Photo / Caroline Brehman
The split between centrist and progressive Democrats has deepened amid the controversy over the much-debated Build Back Better plan, a social spending bill worth $1.75 trillion. Backlash came from left-wing Democrats after Senator Joe Manchin refused to vote for the legislation.
Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell said on Monday that he is ready to consider Joe Manchin’s membership in the Republican Party after the latter came under fire for his unwillingness to vote for the BBB plan.
Speaking on "The Guy Benson Show", McConnell said that while he didn't foresee Manchin’s announcement, he believed “the single greatest favor Joe Manchin could give the country is to kill this bill.”
“That’s what the country needs, to see this bill killed. It is absolutely inappropriate and unnecessary at a time when we’re fighting inflation," McConnell said. "It was an exciting thing to hear. It was a great shot in the arm for the country. I think it’s exactly what the country needed at this particular time.”
The lawmaker also noted that he was shocked by the reaction from the Democratic progressive “Squad,” saying that it wasn’t smart as the evenly divided Senate is going to be 50/50 for another year.
"He doesn’t fit well over there [in the Democratic Party], but that is a decision ultimately that he has to make. We certainly welcome him to join us if he was so inclined," McConnell said.
The Republican also admitted that he “feels more optimistic” after the adoption of the draft law was postponed for an unknown period of time. He claimed that “the American people have seen what true liberalism looks like.”
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McConnell said that the Democratic Party is currently “in very, very tough shape, politically” and it is not going to get much better for them in the near future.
“No one thinks inflation is not going to still be a huge issue. We’re having a difficulty getting people back to work," he noted. "Look, the Senate is still going to be close, but I think the atmosphere in which all of our races are going to be run is even dramatically better than the last time you and I spoke."
On the same day, Manchin criticized Democrats for approaching the BBB plan as if they “have 55 or 60 senators that are Democrats” and can do whatever they want.
“I think I still represent the centrist wing of a Democratic Party that has compassion but also has reasonability,” he noted. “I would like to hope there are still Democrats who think like I do. I'm fiscally responsible and socially compassionate. Now, if there are no Democrats like that, then they’ll have to push me where they want me.”