Democratic Senator Joe Manchin will break ranks with his party to criticize President Obama’s budget proposal on Tuesday, reports National Journal.
Manchin, who won a special election last November to replace the late Sen. Robert Byrd, will say that the President has “failed to lead this debate or offer a serious proposal for spending and cuts that he would be willing to fight for” according to a copy of his prepared remarks obtained by the magazine.
“The truth of the matter is that this debate, as important as it is, will not be decided by House Republicans and Senate Democrats negotiating with each other – or past each other,” Manchin will say. “This debate will be decided when the president leads these tough negotiations.” He will also denounce the Republican proposal and will say it “blindly hacks the budget with no sense of our priorities or of our values as a country.” According to Manchin, both the Democratic and Republican budget proposals up for a floor vote on Tuesday are “extremely partisan and unrealistic.”
The West Virginia Democrat is already seen as one of the more vulnerable Senators up for re-election this cycle. Elected as a moderate after a campaign that featured the then-Governor shooting a facsimile of Obama’s cap and trade bill in a television ad, Manchin has sided with Republicans before, such as when he backed curtailing some of the Environmental Protection Agency’s powers last week.
Watch Manchin’s cap and trade election ad: