The cracks are starting to show in the Democratic caucus. We have seen a few House Democrats splinter off and move towards Trump but none with as big a name as Joe Manchin.
Joe Manchin just broke with Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi and will support Trump’s proposal to end the shutdown when Mitch brings it to the Senate floor for a vote today.
This is a big blow to the Democrats efforts and while Trump needs more defections to get it passed, the first domino is always the most important.
From The Hill: Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) said Thursday that he would support a White House-backed proposal to end the partial government shutdown in exchange for $5.7 billion for the U.S.-Mexico border wall.
Manchin, who is from a state where President Trump remains popular, is the first Democrat to say he will vote for the proposal first outlined by Trump over the weekend.
The West Virginia senator said he would also vote for a continuing resolution (CR) that would reopen the roughly quarter of the government currently closed and fund it through Feb. 8.
“I’m voting for both. I’m doing everything in my power to open up this government,” Manchin said.
In addition to $5.7 billion for the wall, the White House effort would also let Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients and some Temporary Protected Status (TPS) holders apply for a three-year extension of protected status, but include new restrictions on asylum seekers.
But the White House proposal is considered dead in the Senate, as well as the House. Republicans hold 53 seats but they would need at least seven Democratic votes to get over a 60-vote filibuster threshold.
Manchin said there “might be” additional Democrats who could vote for the White House proposal but acknowledged that he wasn’t sure.
Mitch McConnell will hold two votes today – if one can get 60 votes that would put enormous pressure on Nancy Pelosi to approve it.
There is zero chance Schumer’s bill will get 60 with the GOP dug in but there is potential for more Democratic defections as Manchin notes.
Look, the Democrats have made this make or break for Trump and the smart ones like Joe Manchin understand there is nothing as dangerous as someone cornered.
We have over 700 miles of wall and another hundred or two is not a horrible thing so both sides will need to make a compromise.
The Democrats position of zero dollars for any wall is untenable for the duration of this shutdown and they need to realize it sooner rather than later. Compromise requires two