Manchin doubles as House includes paid leave in spending bill

Its. Joe manchinJoe ManchinOvernight Energy & Environment – Presented by the American Petroleum Institute – Biden seeks to tackle methane Biden rallies nations to reduce methane emissions Democrats give Manchin warning about lack of progress on spending bill MORE (DW.Va.) doubled down on Wednesday in opposition to including paid leave in the spending bill, even as House Democrats prepare to include it in their legislation and send it to the Senate.

Manchin told reporters that his questions about the decision, announced by the Speaker of the House Nancy pelosiNancy PelosiOn The Money – Presented by Citi – Democrats get closer to a deal on Biden’s agenda Moderate Democrats push for scores before voting on Biden’s package Democrats on cusp of broad deal on Biden’s agenda MORE (D-Calif.) Early Wednesday – was the first time he heard about the decision. An aide confirmed that he had not seen the House plan.

“That’s a challenge, very much a challenge,” Manchin said, adding that the spending bill is the “wrong place” for a paid leave proposal.

Manchin, instead, argued that paid leave should be done outside of reconciliation, a process Democrats are using to try to advance their bill without the support of the Republican Party. The arcane budgeting process comes with strict rules about what can and cannot be included on the invoice.

“I want to support paid vacations. I want to do it in a bipartisan way. I have spoken with [Sen.] Susan collinsSusan Margaret Collins First openly lesbian judge confirmed in federal circuit court Congress can help save pregnant women and mothers of color Collins casts 8,000 consecutive roll call votes in the Senate MORE [R-Maine]. I have spoken with colleagues on both sides. We both agree that something can be done, ”Manchin said.

“Let’s do that in a [way]. We are trying to force it through reconciliation that has guardrails and rules and regulations. Let’s do it and let’s do it well, ”he said.

House Democrats announced Wednesday that they would re-include paid leave in the bill. Pelosi said the decision was made “at the urging of many members of the Caucus.”

The provision will provide four weeks of permanent parental and medical leave, according to a Democratic aide familiar with the language.

If House Democrats pass climate and social spending legislation with the paid leave proposal in the bill, they would be forcing Senate Democrats to decide whether to try to remove it.

Any senator can force a vote to try to change the spending bill once it is in the full Senate, and most amendments can be adopted by a simple majority. That could allow all Republicans and Manchin to try to eliminate the paid leave provision.

Democratic senators are still working to try to get Manchin to participate with a paid leave proposal, though he has signaled for weeks that he does not support including it in the spending bill. He added this week that he thought a supporting structure, with the cost split between employers and employees, would face a challenge to Senate rules.

“It’s very exciting,” Sen said. Kirsten gillibrandKirsten Gillibrand Democrats spotlight Manchin for lack of progress on spending bill First openly lesbian judge confirmed to federal circuit court Manchin blames Senate rules for lack of paid leave MORE (DN.Y.), adding that he thought the House plan “could” survive the Senate, although he acknowledged that he had not seen the plan.

“I think the House decided it was really important to the economy,” Gillibrand added.

Chairperson of the Senate Finance Committee Ron WydenRonald (Ron) Lee WydenMillionaires urge Democrats to include billionaires tax in spending bill Biden triggers high-level dispute over spending framework Democrats face ire of women over loss of paid leave PLUS (D-Ore.) He said “I was going to do my best” to try to get it on the bill.

“I think it’s a shame that we are essentially just the industrialized western nation that hasn’t figured it out,” he added.

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