Monday, May 29, 2023

The Manchin On The Hill, Con't

Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia will get his pipeline through the state after all, stuffed into the debt ceiling deal so that he doesn't scuttle it.
The text of the debt ceiling bill released on Sunday would approve all the remaining permits to complete the stalled Mountain Valley Pipeline, delivering a big win for West Virginia Sens. Joe Manchin and Shelley Moore Capito.

But the backing of the pipeline that would deliver gas from West Virginia into the Southeast is sure to set off bitter complaints from the environmental groups that have fought its construction for years and turned the project into a symbol of their struggle against fossil fuels.

Manchin hailed the bill’s language, saying finishing the pipeline would lower energy costs for the United States and West Virginia.

“I am proud to have fought for this critical project and to have secured the bipartisan support necessary to get it across the finish line,” he said in a statement.

The bill agreed by the White House and House Republicans must still be approved by both chambers of Congress, which is expected to happen in the coming week.
This of course will bring Manchin plenty of money after he leaves the Senate. As for the people of WV who will lose their lands and environment in the Wild and Wonderful state, made Manchin a lot of money, so shut up.

Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) will take steps to strip a new natural gas pipeline project from a bipartisan bill to raise the debt ceiling, his office said Monday—one of several scenarios that could derail the newly announced legislation as party leaders scramble to secure votes to pass it before the country defaults on its debt as soon as June 5.

Kaine’s office said Monday he would file an amendment to remove federal permits for the Mountain Valley Pipeline project from the debt ceiling bill, calling the provision “completely unrelated to the debt ceiling matter,” NBC News reported Monday.

Kaine has long opposed the project backed by Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), which would transport gas to East Coast markets via a 300-mile pipeline through West Virginia and Virginia and has faced repeated delays prompted by legal challenges from environmentalists.

Kaine’s push for an amendment is one of several hurdles that could complicate, delay or even change the math for the bill in the Democratic-controlled Senate—where it needs 60 votes to clear a filibuster threshold—before it heads to President Joe Biden’s desk for final approval.

GOP Sens. Mike Lee (Utah) and Lindsey Graham (S.C.) have also vowed to take measures that could stall the legislation in the upper chamber, with Lee taking issue with what he said is an inadequate reduction in overall federal spending and Graham raising concerns about a provision that caps defense spending at the $886 billion Biden requested in his fiscal year 2024 budget.

The Republican-controlled House Rules Committee is expected to vote as soon as Tuesday on the guidelines for debate, including whether the bill will be subject to amendments, but three of the nine Republican members have publicly criticized the bill, meaning their votes against the legislation could stall it in committee if the four Democrats on the panel also oppose. 

So the whole thing could still come undone.

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