Democrats are expected to cut a key part of President Joe Biden’s climate change agenda to appease West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin, The New York Times reports.
Democrats are expected to axe a program that would quickly replace coal and gas-fired power plants with wind, solar, and nuclear energy after Manchin told the White House that he “strongly opposes” the proposal.
The White House is now scrambling to rewrite the legislation without the clean energy provision and hoping to “cobble together a mix of other policies that could also cut emissions,” according to the report.
“The White House is laser focused on advancing the president’s climate goals and positioning the United States to meet its emission targets in a way that grows domestic industries and good jobs,” White House spokesman Vedant Patel told the Times.
“Senator Manchin has clearly expressed his concerns about using taxpayer dollars to pay private companies to do things they’re already doing,” Manchin spokeswoman Sam Runyon told the Times. “He continues to support efforts to combat climate change while protecting American energy independence and ensuring our energy reliability.”
The $150 billion clean electricity program was perhaps the most important piece of Biden’s climate agenda. The program would provide government funding to utilities that shift from fossil fuels to renewable energy sources and penalize those that did not.
“This is absolutely the most important climate policy in the package,” Leah Stokes, a climate policy expert that has advised the Senate Democrats, told the Times. “We fundamentally need it to meet our climate goals. That’s just the reality. And now we can’t. So this is pretty sad.”
Manchin pushing CTC cap, work requirements:
Manchin is also pushing to weaken Biden’s proposed enhanced Child Tax Credit expansion, according to Axios.
Manchin told the White House that the tax credit, which provides up to $300 per month per child, must include a “firm work requirement” and cap the credit for families who earn over around $60,000.
Manchin also wants similar income caps on day care subsidies and doesn’t appear “interested” in backing the proposed paid family leave or elder care programs in the bill.