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Say it ain’t so that Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., has abandoned his legacy.

What happened to the Joe Manchin who, in the first two years of the Trump administration, took the lead in West Virginia defending the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) from repeal? In doing so, Manchin protected those with preexisting conditions, allowed children to remain on their parents insurance until age 26, and maintained health care access through expanded Medicaid for the working poor.

Say it ain’t so that Joe will now oppose the Build Back Better Act that would provide child care for the working poor and reinstate the child tax credit, which just expired. By financing these two aspects, the Build Back Better bill would reduce child poverty in West Virginia by 40%.

Say it ain’t so that Joe has opposed the Build Back Better bill because of concerns of promoting a sense of “entitlement” among the citizens of West Virginia. Entitlement? The Trump tax cut was the most egregious example of entitlement in the past six years. But it was entitlement for the wealthy, not for the poor. And while Manchin eventually voted against the tax cut, he was conflicted and only voted with the opposition when it became apparent that the bill was going to pass without his vote.

I’m not sure how many millionaires there are in the U.S. Senate, but I am sure that none of their children go to bed hungry at night. I have heard many public school teachers say that a significant number of their children come to school hungry and it’s something that shouldn’t be happening in the United States.

Michael Schroering


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