Huffington Post reporter says Manchin called him 'bulls—' during tense Build Back Better exchange

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A Huffington Post reporter said Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W. Va., called him “bulls—” on Wednesday during another heated round with the press about his hesitations over the Build Back Better plan.

Manchin is one of a few moderate senators still holding out on President Biden’s multi trillion-dollar spending package. With the media consistently pressing him on if and when he’s going to change his mind, the confrontations have sometimes become contentious.

“‘This is bulls–t. You’re bulls–t,'” Joe Manchin just told me,” Huffington Post politics reporter Arthur Delaney tweeted.

U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) speaks to reporters in the Senate subway at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, U.S. November 3, 2021. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
(REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst)

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Delaney followed up the quote with some context that he had asked the senator about child tax credits. Other reporters confirmed his account.

“I had asked if it was true he wanted CTC out of BBB,” Delaney said. “‘I’ve always been for child tax credits,'” he said. So I asked if he wants it to continue paying parents $300 a month, and he said he was not going to ‘negotiate’ with me and that I’m bullshit.”

“Everyone around here is ‘for’ the child tax credit,” Delaney continued. “It’s a question of whether you want it to keep paying parents as much as $300 per month. If the advance monthly payments and extra $1,600 expire at the end of the month, there will still be a $2,000 partially refundable credit.”

U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) delivers remarks to reporters at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., U.S. November 1, 2021.
(REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst)

Manchin has sparred with reporters on several occasions after not taking the progressive position on certain Capitol Hill debates. His colleague Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, D-Ariz. has also been on the receiving end of aggressive questions on her bill position. Media pundits have mocked her, while news outlets have accused her of acting more like a Republican. Left-wing activists once even confronted her in a bathroom at Arizona State University over her opposition to Build Back Better.

The Congressional Budget Office released its estimate for Build Back Better’s impact on the U.S. economy, predicting the legislation would cost nearly $5 trillion and add $3 trillion to the national debt if it remains in effect through 2031. Some Democrats have rejected the CBO’s conclusions, while White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki referred to the score as “fake.”

Manchin told reporters he had been meeting with Biden for negotiations on the bill.

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