President Joe Biden said that he would take executive action on climate change if Democrats’ proposed spending bill doesn’t include clean energy provisions, but he did not mention Senator Joe Manchin, who has been vocal about his opposition to a larger bill including climate provisions and tax increases.
The president is currently traveling in the Middle East while Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer negotiates with Mr Manchin.
“So let me be clear: if the Senate will not move to tackle the climate crisis and strengthen our domestic clean energy industry, I will take strong executive action to meet this moment”, he said. “I will not back down: the opportunity to create jobs and build a clean energy future is too important to relent.”
Mr Biden’s words come after Mr Manchin, a conservative Democrat from coal-heavy West Virginia, said he wanted to put a hold on negotiations with Mr Schumer to pass a social spending bill after the latest inflation numbers.
“I can’t make that decision basically on taxes of any type and also on the energy and climate because it takes the taxes to pay for the investment in the clean technology that I’m in favor of”, Mr Manchin told WV Metronews host Hoppy Kercheval.
This came after multiple reports saying that Mr Manchin had wanted to remove provisions to combat climate change and tax increases on wealthier Americans and corporations. Earlier this week, the Bureau of Labour Statistics reported that inflation increased 9.1 per cent in the past 12 months, a 40-year high.
Mr Biden also said that Democrats’ proposed plan to continue subsidies for the Affordable Care Act and allow Medicare to negotiate drug prices would combat rising prices.
“I want to thank Leader Schumer for his dogged and determined effort to produce the strongest possible bill to bring down costs, reduce the deficit, and combat the climate crisis while boosting our energy security – even offering significant compromises to try to reach an agreement”, he said, and also thanked House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
Nowhere in his statement did he mention Mr Manchin.
Join our commenting forum
Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies