Chuck Schumer is still doin' this Build Back Better fandango in January, and also voting rights. That's according to a VERY PISSY Dear Colleague letter the Senate majority leader sent last night, after Senator Joe Manchin had his temper tantrum on Fox News and seemingly killed BBB, after which Manchin lifted the drawbridge on his houseboat and commenced to peeking out the secret eyehole in the drawbridge of his houseboat to make sure everybody was still watching him. (What? Joe Manchin is a very serious person, obviously, we're not saying that he isn't. We're just suggesting that if he doesn't get constant fawning attention he will LITERALLY DIE.)

In Schumer's letter, he says everyone regrets that "Senator Manchin," whom he names out loud just like Jen Psaki did yesterday, "could not come to an agreement with the president." He doesn't verbatim blame him for destroying everyone's holiday spirit, but it's between the lines. Still he says they're moving forward in January anyway, on all the things:


[N]either that delay, nor other recent pronouncements, will deter us from continuing to try to find a way forward. We simply cannot give up. We must and we will keep fighting to deliver for working families. [...]

Senators should be aware that the Senate will, in fact, consider the Build Back Better Act, very early in the new year so that every Member of this body has the opportunity to make their position known on the Senate floor, not just on television. We are going to vote on a revised version of the House-passed Build Back Better Act – and we will keep voting on it until we get something done.

Additionally, please be advised that shortly after the 117th Congress resumes in January, the Senate will consider voting rights legislation, as early as the first week back. Previous attempts to simply debate such legislation have been obstructed by Republican filibusters, effectively defending the voter suppression and election nullification laws passed by so many Republican state legislatures on party lines with simple majorities. We all agree that the right to vote is the cornerstone of our democracy. With that in mind, I would ask you to consider this question: if the right to vote is the cornerstone of our democracy, then how can we in good conscience allow for a situation in which the Republican Party can debate and pass voter suppression laws at the State level with only a simple majority vote, but not allow the United States Senate to do the same? If Senate Republicans continue to abuse the filibuster and prevent the body from considering this bill, the Senate will then consider changes to any rules which prevent us from debating and reaching final conclusion on important legislation.

Schumer says bringing these things to the floor in January will make sure "every Member of this body has the opportunity to make their position known on the Senate floor, not just on television." And apparently since Schumer says they're just going to keep voting on this shit until shit passes, Joe Manchin will get a LOT of chances to make his position known on the Senate floor!

Does Schumer have something up his sleeve? Nobody knows, but he's mad, and this definitely puts Manchin, and also Kyrsten Sinema, on the spot. Somebody in the White House seems to feel there's still a way forward, telling Politico that "We'll get it done. There's always a way. Great to see Dems rally around POTUS today. We’ll figure out a path to unlock it.” So, maybe?

Politico Playbook has a good roundup of all the Monday morning quarterbacking and the "where do we go from here"-ing. Is Build Back Better really dead? Is this another of Manchin's tiresome diva moments? And is your IRA tanking today because of Joe Manchin, because of Omicron or both? We don't know, but Goldman Sachs has downgraded its GDP forecast for the US and A because of what Manchin did. So that's cool.

Meanwhile, Manchin is out there still doing interviews, making sure everybody knows that all of this — whether it's the Medicare expansion or the child tax credit or pre-K or lower drug prices — is, at its heart and at its root, about his feelings. Because as we all know, you can't spell "Shit motherfucker goddamn, I can't afford my insulin" without M-A-N-C-H-I-N. (No really, you can't. Try.)

“I’m not blaming anybody,” he said. "I knew where they were, and I knew what they could and could not do. They just never realized it, because they figured surely, dear God, we can move one person, surely we can badger and beat one person up, surely we can get enough protesters to make that person uncomfortable enough [that] they’ll just say, ‘I’ll go for anything. Just quit.’”

“Well guess what, I’m from West Virginia,” Manchin added. “I’m not where they’re from and they can just beat the living crap out of people and think they’ll be submissive.”

LOL get fucked.

So where does this go now? Literally nobody knows, everyone is just typing.

But Chuck Schumer says it ain't dead yet, and he says he's holding a Zoom chat with his caucus on Tuesday night to hash things out. So we guess we'll see what happens in January. Maybe it's just to embarrass Joe Manchin personally, in which case we're fine with that too.

Hoo-ray?

Whatever.

[Schumer letter / Washington Post]

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Evan Hurst

Evan Hurst is the managing editor of Wonkette, which means he is the boss of you, unless you are Rebecca, who is boss of him. His dog Lula is judging you right now.

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