Fellow Democrat emerges as the enemy of Biden’s climate agenda ahead of Glasgow

President’s best hopes of passing any legislation on climate change – or anything for that matter – relies on a moderate Senator who co-founded a coal brokerage company, writes Eric Garcia

Thursday 28 October 2021 22:36
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<p>West Virginia Democratic Senator Joe Manchin, centre, leaves the US Capitol following a vote on 27 October, 2021</p>

West Virginia Democratic Senator Joe Manchin, centre, leaves the US Capitol following a vote on 27 October, 2021

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Senator Joe Manchin has emerged as the main roadblock to Democrats’ plans on tackling the climate crisis as President Joe Biden heads to Glasgow for the climate summit, COP26.

Mr Biden has pushed the message that America is “back” on climate after his predecessor Donald Trump pulled out of the Paris Agreement and mostly flouted government mandates on climate change. But in a Senate that is evenly divided between Democrats and Republicans, passing legislation on climate will be incredibly difficult.

As a result, Democrats’ only likely course of climate action would be through their planned social spending bill. Democrats plan to pass it through an arcane process known as budget reconciliation, which would allow them to pass a bill with only 51 votes as long as it is related to spending.

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