Sen Joe Manchin’s energy reform bill could scold government funding

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Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer is expected to vote this week on a short-term funding bill to avoid a government shutdown – but the process could hit a roadblock in the form of a proposal of Sen. Joe Manchin to expedite energy permitting projects.

Schumer (D-NY) will likely call for a vote on the interim funding bill — known as the continuing resolution — as soon as the Senate reconvenes on Tuesday to prevent a government shutdown by Friday at the end of some exercice. He introduced a House bill last week that would fund the government until December 16.

Along with $13.7 billion in military aid to Ukraine as it battles Russian forces, as well as Schumer’s request for $290 million to fight “rainbow fentanyl smuggled into the country, Schumer is also adamant about including Manchin’s licensing reforms in the must-have package. .

But in a 50-50 split house, where the majority leader will need 60 votes to bypass an expected filibuster, Republicans and some progressive Democrats have been reluctant to back Manchin’s bill.

Progressives think it gives energy companies too much, and Republicans are in no rush to reward the moderate West Virginia Democrat for backing President Biden’s $740 billion Cut Inflation Act, passed on Tuesday. last month.

Schumer (D-NY) will likely call for a vote on the interim funding bill — known as the continuing resolution — as soon as the Senate reconvenes on Tuesday.
AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File
Manchin, the chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, said his bill would speed up the permitting process for the 303-mile Mountain Valley Pipeline.
Manchin, the chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, said his bill would speed up the permitting process for the 303-mile Mountain Valley Pipeline.
Lokman Vural Elibol/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

To further complicate the situation, Manchin’s West Virginia colleague, GOP Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, presented a separate proposal for the authorization process, a proposal that Republicans joined.

Manchin said “it’s not about me” when asked in an interview on Sunday why Republicans should vote for his legislation.

“My Republican friends, I’ve worked with them for 12 years, and I know their #1 item they’ve had, the #1 priority they’ve had is enabling reform,” he said on “Fox News Sunday.

Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) said he opposes the reform plan even though part of it crosses his state, fearing that
Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) said he opposes the reform plan even though part of it runs through his state, fearing it “would open the door to serious abuse and even Corruption”.
Brad Vest/Getty Images
To further complicate the situation, Manchin's West Virginia colleague, GOP Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, presented a separate proposal for the clearance process.
To further complicate the situation, Manchin’s West Virginia colleague, GOP Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, presented a separate proposal for the clearance process.
Joshua Lott/The Washington Post via Getty Images
Republicans have since rallied behind Capito's bill.
Republicans have since rallied behind Capito’s bill.
Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

“We can’t build anything in America. It takes five to 10 years. The developed world takes one to three years. And why should we be so behind the developed world in getting products to market, in being able to have the infrastructure to transport energy? And we’re asking people around the world to do things for us that we won’t do for ourselves? he continued.

Manchin, chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, said his bill would speed up the licensing process for the 303-mile Mountain Valley pipeline that carries natural gas from West Virginia to Virginia. .

“With the high energy costs that we have, the high gas and natural gas prices, the high gasoline prices, the only way to bring those prices down is to manufacture and compete more, produce more. And that’s what it’s all about,” Manchin said in an interview with a West Virginia radio station last month, defending the pipeline and its deal to support the Waste Reduction Act. inflation.

“My Republican friends, I’ve worked with them for 12 years, and I know their #1 item they’ve had, the #1 priority they’ve had is enabling reform.”
Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images

Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) said he opposes the reform plan even though part of it runs through his state, fearing it “would open the door to serious abuse and even Corruption”.

“If they demonstrate on the merits that they should have the right to build a pipeline … then build it by all means,” Kaine said in a speech to the Senate last week.

“But don’t accept the need to authorize reform, then choose one project across the United States affecting my state and remove it from authorization for reform, isolating it from normal processes.”

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