Let’s hold off on that statue for Senator Joe Manchin of the fossil fuel state West Virginia. He just agreed to what Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said is “the greatest pro-climate legislation that has ever been passed by Congress.”

This “pro-climate” bill includes a West Virginia tax, that is, it would double the tax on mining coal on a per tonnage basis. Has a politician ever so blatantly sold-out many of his own constituents?

CFACT’s Marc Morano spelled out Sen. Manchin’s perfidy well here.

Last December and last week Sen. Manchin publicly opposed massive new federal spending proposals, including hundreds of millions in corporate welfare subsidies for so-called “green energy,” that is, wind turbines, solar panels and electric vehicles. I extolled this common sense by his refusal to support more deficit spending and pointless taxpayer giveaways to Democratic Party climate donors, which requires the creation of “borrowed” money out of thin air, when price inflation is at its worst in four decades.

Indeed, Joe Manchin appeared as a voice of sanity in the ruling Party in Washington.

But, as I learned long ago in politics, a politician is “with you” – until they’re not.

Joe Manchin, the new Senator Flim-Flam, personified that common occurrence this week when he changed his mind to support this mostly climate change bill which the Senate claims, with no scientific basis, will reduce carbon emissions by 40 percent by 2030. Were that true, it wouldn’t matter since climate will go on changing. What is more likely is a lot fewer energy jobs in West Virginia and elsewhere, which is the point, thanks to Senator Flim-flam who caved to pressure.

The promoters of this mostly climate change bill claim that spending hundreds of billions on more solar, wind and electric vehicles is a “very big deal”. Yet, China alone has added dozens of new coal-fired power plants in the last year that renders pointless U.S. climate change policy, which, by the way, enriches China as a major global manufacturer of solar panels and EV batteries.

Also lost in all this blather is that man-made carbon emissions comprise about 1/10,000th (not a misprint) of the planet’s atmospheric gases; so how is “reducing” carbon emissions of such a tiny fraction affect anything? And how would this Christmas tree of climate corporate welfare from Congress possibly mitigate the purported “crisis?” No one can honestly say, and almost no one in the media bothers asking.

The added federal deficit spending of nearly $400 billion on just climate change initiatives would, in Washington parlance, be financed by massive new tax hikes on employers and a huge expansion in the workforce of the Internal Revenue Service to conduct more audits, along with other budgetary gimmicks to give the illusion of deficit reduction.

America is now in recession, with the economy declining in the first half of year, notwithstanding the fatuous denials by President Biden and the vacuous media echo chamber. Inflation is running at 9 percent annually. How does the Democratic Party controlling Congress respond? More spending and more taxes, with Sen. Flim-flam bringing it across the finish line (though the bill has not yet passed either house of Congress).

This new bill is entitled the “Inflation Reduction Act of 2022,” which is another daily example of the Orwellian dishonesty from the ruling class in Washington. Hundreds of billions more in federal spending (albeit lower from prior propsals) of non-existing money using budget fakery will add gasoline—not water—to the inflation fire.

Was the name change all it took for Flim-flam Manchin to sell out his home state of West Virginia that he purports to represent? This is a state with tens of thousands of workers in the oil, coal and gas industries whose livelihoods are in the crosshairs of the senator’s own political party.

Soon to be 75 years old, perhaps Sen. Flim-flam just decided he’s not running for re-election in 2024, so his constituents matter a lot less. Why continue withstanding the grief and harassment from Climate Industrial Complex?

Ultimately, you have to figure one or both realities with Senator Flim-flam of West Virginia. Perhaps he has decided he is not running again for the Senate and is thus preparing for his semi-retirement as a highly compensated rainmaking lobbyist; and/or he was made an offer by Chuck Schumer that he couldn’t refuse, as did Don Corleone to Johnny Fontaine’s band leader: “either his brains or his signature would be on the [climate bill].”

Author

  • Peter Murphy

    Peter Murphy is Senior Fellow at CFACT. He has researched and advocated for a variety of policy issues, including education reform and fiscal policy, both in the non-profit sector and in government in the administration of former New York Governor George Pataki. He previously wrote and edited The Chalkboard weblog for the NY Charter Schools Association, and has been published in numerous media outlets, including The Hill, New York Post, Washington Times and the Wall Street Journal. Twitter: @PeterMurphy26 Website: https://www.petermurphylgs.com/