Keeping a promise he made in getting the Inflation Reduction Act to pass, President Joe Biden announced his support for Sen. Joe Manchin’s proposal to overhaul the federal permitting process, which could end up in the defense spending bill.
Manchin’s proposal speeds up environmental reviews along with approving a natural gas pipeline in his home of West Virginia, along with numerous other provisions. His plan, though, still has to earn enough votes from both Democrats and Republicans to be added to the bill.
The deal comes in the shadow of fellow Democratic moderate Kyrsten Sinema announcing that she would leave the party to become an independent, threatening the Democrats’ slim advantage in the body.
Manchin said that while he does not know what the future holds, he has no plans to leave the Democratic Party.
“I support Senator Manchin’s permitting reform proposal as a way to cut Americans’ energy bills, promote U.S. energy security, and boost our ability to get energy projects built and connected to the grid,” Biden said in his statement.
Biden pitched Manchin’s proposal as a cost-saving plan that will bring prices down for families and businesses across America.
“Senator Manchin’s legislation is an important step toward unlocking the potential of these new energy projects to cut consumer costs and spur good-paying jobs,” Biden said. “It is critical to improving the permitting process so we can produce and deliver energy to consumers in all parts of the country.”
There will be Democratic opposition to the proposal. Sen. Elizabeth Warren is already on the record opposing it along with Vermont independent Bernie Sanders.
Manchin earlier this week urged for bipartisan support despite the opposition.
“I cannot go home and explain to West Virginians why the Senate would fail to support creating new energy jobs, producing more energy, and enhancing American energy security quickly,” Manchin said in a statement on Tuesday.
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