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Sen. Joe Manchin, DW.Va., explained why he agreed to back a new spending program, promising it would not raise taxes or worsen inflation, while admitting he would was cheated on a previous spending bill.
In a “Fox News Sunday” interview, host Bret Baier pointed out that last year Manchin appeared on the same program and said that a previous Democratic spending bill, the US bailout, would not lead to inflation. On Sunday, Manchin admitted he was wrong about that.
“Why should Americans believe you now when you say this new bill won’t make inflation worse?” Bayer asked.
“I’m going to make sure I don’t make that mistake again,” Manchin said. “At the end of the day, I’m going to make sure I don’t make that mistake again.”
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Manchin also insisted that the new bill will not raise taxes, even though groups like Americans for Tax Reform claim it does.
“It doesn’t raise taxes,” Manchin said, explaining that “all it does is close loopholes.”
Manchin said he doubted he could ever reach an agreement with Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D.N.Y., and that when he reached an agreement, he “made sure that there was no tax increase.
The new bill, known as the Cut Inflation Act of 2022, is significantly scaled back from the Build Back Better Act that Democrats failed to pass. This bill would have cost around $3 trillion, while the current bill would cost $433 billion.
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The new bill includes a minimum corporate tax of 15% for companies worth more than $1 billion, which is expected to raise $313 billion; increased IRS tax enforcement, which is expected to bring in $124 billion; and that will close the carried interest loophole, estimated at $14 billion. The senator insisted that this is not the same as raising taxes.
“All it does is close the loopholes,” he said.
Another part of the bill Manchin addressed on Sunday is a subsidy for people who earn up to $300,000 a year and buy an electric car. The provision has been criticized for forcing the general public to pay for wealthy Americans to buy expensive vehicles. Manchin himself had lambasted the idea in the past, pointing out that the vehicles were already in high demand, so the incentives made no sense.
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Today, Manchin says he still holds the same belief, but says the current bill is not just about buying power, but about supporting American production. To qualify for the subsidy, a car battery must be manufactured in the United States and not in China.
“We shouldn’t be looking to China to make sure they have a total grip on us and that’s what we’re trying to break. And we’re going to break it as fast as we can, because we’re encouraging,” he said. .
Fox News’ Jason Donner and Tyler Olson contributed to this report.