The progressive agenda of the Democratic Party is basically stalled out along the side of the political road on the way to November’s midterms. And right now, people are just trying to figure out the best person to blame.
Democrats are in chaos and now even blaming fellow Democrats for their inability to make progress on climate change, gun violence, and inflation.
When Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W. Va) decided to thwart his party’s climate-change efforts because of his fear of the skyrocketing inflation, he earned a stern rebuke from the progressive king in Congress, Sen. Bernie Sanders.
“He has sabotaged the president’s agenda. The problem was that we continue to talk to Manchin like he was serious. He was not,” Sanders (I-Vt.) said to Martha Raddatz on ABC’s “This Week.”
The Democrats should be careful with how far they go because they still need Manchin’s vote on key health legislation like the Affordable Care Act subsidies and drug-pricing reform.
The White House is now left trying to figure out how to include climate change measures in executive actions and just crossing their fingers that inflation will slow down in the next round of reports.
If the Democrats have any hope at all of keeping control of the Senate, they will need each other to make progress with policies in the next few weeks.
Biden’s popularity continues to plummet. His Middle East trip was filled with gaffes that seemed unpresidential. And there were no new commitments from leaders in the regions to increase oil production so that gas prices could come down.
Biden’s Popularity Plummets as He Embarks on Middle East Trip
The politics of the trip were lost in the hoopla surrounding Biden’s fist bump seen around the world as he encounter the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia.
Biden has also had severe backlash surrounding what he did or did not say regarding the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
Khashoggi’s fiance, Hatice Cengiz, tweeted, “the blood of MBS’s next victim is on [Biden’s] hands.”
“I’m sorry she feels that way,” Biden said when asked Friday about Cengiz’s tweet.
Biden’s team has been defensive about this recent Middle East trip. They have indicated that meeting with Saudis and others in the region was important for the United States. They needed to confront Iran’s emerging nuclear program and deal with the fallout from Russia’s war in Ukraine. They also were able to address the global competition with China economically.
White House spokesman John Kirby told ABC News, “There is a huge agenda of U.S. national security interests at play in the Middle East and you’re not going to advance those interests if you just stay at home and try to phone it in. You have to actually go and speak to leaders and be on the ground to try to make a difference.”
The blame game in D.C. is heated on several fronts. But back to one that matters most this week. Sen. Bernie Sanders had more to say about the role Manchin is playing in their party.
“[Manchin] has sabotaged the president’s agenda. No, look, if you check the record, six months ago, I made it clear that you have people like Manchin, [Arizona Sen. Kyrsten] Sinema to a lesser degree, who are intentionally sabotaging the President’s agenda.”
He went on to say that Manchin was a major recipient of fossil fuel money and he also received campaign contributions from 25 GOP billionaires.
“In my humble opinion, Manchin represents the very wealthiest people in this country, not working families in West Virginia or America,” Sanders said.
That language is not going to establish the kind of unity the Democratic Party desperately needs.