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MANCHIN MOVES AND IT’S CHECKMATE AGAINST BIDEN
Recently, Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) has been unyielding on Capitol Hill, expressing his frustration with the Biden Administration. He has stated his intention to continue blocking the president’s nominees. Additionally, he is warning that he may take legal action against the Biden Treasury Department if they do not follow through with the revised electric vehicle tax credit as he believes they previously agreed to do.
One source reports that the Treasury Department’s guidance on complying with battery component and critical mineral rules in the Inflation Reduction Act has been delayed by several months as the administration finalizes the requirements. This delay and indications that the rules may be implemented with less strictness than intended have angered Manchin, the law’s chief author.
During comments at an industry conference focused on electrification called the SAFE Summit, Manchin expressed his concern that the guidance doesn’t align with his intentions for the law. He stated that he is willing to take legal action if necessary to prevent it from being implemented.
‘I think they’re going to try to screw me on this, and I’m willing to go to court,’ Manchin said during comments at the SAFE Summit, an industry conference focused on electrification. ‘I’m willing to stop it all.’”
It seems that Manchin has introduced some provisions to the Inflation Reduction Act that aim at reducing dependency on China for critical minerals and making clean vehicle supply chains more focused on being made and assembled in America. This move is seen as a response to Biden’s attempt to push his spending bill through by bypassing Manchin. As per the provisions, the required critical minerals would have to come from the United States or a free trade agreement country. Nonetheless, some appreciate Manchin’s efforts in this regard.
“I don’t have a problem opening up to our reliable trading partners,” Manchin said. “France, the UK, the EU—I’m fine with processing in those areas. I’m just not fine with [those countries] completing the project and all we’re going to do is end up assembling in the US.
That is not the bill, that’s not how we wrote it, and it’s not how it should be implemented,” he said.
If Manchin runs against Biden in 2024, many conservative Democrats could end up supporting him instead of the president. It’s important for Biden to keep this in mind.