The Kamala Harris-Joe Manchin dust-up explained – and why it matters to the Biden administration

The Kamala Harris-Joe Manchin dust-up explained - and why it matters to the Biden administration

Vice President Kamala Harris’ West Virginia media appearances last week – in which she tried to sell the Biden administration’s COVID-19 stimulus plan – didn’t go over well with the red state’s longtime Democratic senator, Joe Manchin. Manchin, whose moderate vote is enough to sink President Joe Biden’s agenda in a Senate split 50-50, chided the administration for not giving him a heads up on the interviews, contending "That’s not a way of working together.” While Manchin and the White House made up, Harris’ misstep with the powerful swing senator exemplifies how politically attuned the administration has to be to push through its legislation in a narrowly divided Senate with moderate pockets on both sides. Here’s what happened and why it matters to the Biden administration. Harris on West Virginia television On Jan. 28, the vice president spoke with West Virginia television station WSAZ , answering questions about the administration’s policy agenda and priorities for the next round of COVI-19 stimulus legislation. The appearance, part of a series of interviews Harris gave to local media in West Virginia and Arizona, was seen as an unwelcome foray into Manchin’s turf. The senator said the White House had not informed him of the vice president’s appearance ahead of time. More: The filibuster may make it difficult for Joe Biden to pass his agenda, even in a Democratic Congress "I couldn’t believe it. No one called me," he told reporters the following week. The senator later, however, said "there’s no apologies needed" […]

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