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U.S. Politiks: The Manchin-ian Candidate


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3 hours ago, Fragile Bird said:

Biden is not going to do what is best for the markets, he will do what is best for the people!

And speaking of self-serving Mr. Trump, I watched part of a press conference today with Biden and the CEOs of Merck and J&J where Biden announced the purchase of yet another 100 M doses of the J&J vaccine, even though enough has been purchased to vaccinate everyone in the US. They groveled so hard you’d have thought Trump was still the prez!

Stupid question: Why did he buy more than is needed? (And would he sell the surplus to us, because our government sucks?)

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4 minutes ago, Mindwalker said:

Stupid question: Why did he buy more than is needed? (And would he sell the surplus to us, because our government sucks?)

As I said the other day, the discussion now showing up is that more has to be held back to vaccinate those under 18 and to keep as booster shots. There won’t be any Pfizer, Moderna or J&J leaving the US any time soon. Which begs the question, why the holy hell can’t they at least release the AZ vaccine, there’s been lots of opposition to the J&J, I can’t imagine what the response would be to the AZ vaccine.

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I think adding more would be gilding the lily...

I will add another question, though, in addition to the AZ what about releasing the Novavax? It hasn’t been approved yet in Canada because more data has been requested, and obviously hasn’t been approved in the US either. Will that be held back for booster shots as well?

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Sounds like the next big bill to push through will be some sort of package of China-related measures. https://www.washingtonpost.com/us-policy/2021/03/10/president-bidens-second-big-bill-may-be-china-package-pushed-by-top-senate-democrat/

I think it makes sense. Schumer wants it, there's a ton of bipartisan proposals floating around the senate right now, and it could be a relatively quick win that passes easily (depending on what exactly it is).

Meanwhile, some House Democrats are saying they'll start moving on the second big reconciliation bill, the infrastructure-and-who-knows-what-else one, in May. But I suspect that'll be a much slower bill to pass, since there's so many different proposals on what to include in it. On top of that, Manchin is no longer the only Senate Democrat saying he wants the bill paid for, so those details will definitely need to get sorted out. I would assume a final deal is partially paid-for, but that there's not $4 trillion in new taxes either. Also some amount of time will need to get spent pushing for bipartisan compromise with Republicans so that Manchin is eventually comfortable with passing the bill on a party-line vote. Hopefully it can all be finished before the August recess.

And unless/until there's 50 votes to change the filibuster, that's probably it for major legislation this year. But on the plus side, there's currently 69 federal judicial vacancies that Democrats need to start filling soon. Plus, I assume, Breyer will probably retire in June when the current SCOTUS term ends.

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13 hours ago, The Anti-Targ said:

^ sees the question, and raises a speculation.

What speculation is that? I’ve been thinking about this, and the leading candidate is the fact that China has done so well and their economy is back on track. The US wants to get back into competition with China and if that means another 100,000 dead in Europe and elsewhere that’s ok, it will just weaken their economies for longer and lift the US economy. After all, 2024 is coming up fast, not to mention 2022.

But I’m cynical. Or realistic, pick the word.

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I gotta say, Biden is right to take a "victory lap" for the stimulus bill (soon to be law, maybe already is). However, I would say his actual role in getting it through was mostly through creating a wish list and maybe arm twisting (smooth talking?) Manchin a bit during negotiations. Just speaks to how much we exalt the Presidency when we should be focusing on other branches as well.

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9 minutes ago, IheartIheartTesla said:

I gotta say, Biden is right to take a "victory lap" for the stimulus bill (soon to be law, maybe already is). However, I would say his actual role in getting it through was mostly through creating a wish list and maybe arm twisting (smooth talking?) Manchin a bit during negotiations. Just speaks to how much we exalt the Presidency when we should be focusing on other branches as well.

Well, something this large only gets passed with a President backing it. And Biden had to hold firm at his original funding number. At the very least give him credit for not getting drawn down the bipartisan wormhole with Collins and gang.

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29 minutes ago, IheartIheartTesla said:

I gotta say, Biden is right to take a "victory lap" for the stimulus bill (soon to be law, maybe already is). However, I would say his actual role in getting it through was mostly through creating a wish list and maybe arm twisting (smooth talking?) Manchin a bit during negotiations. Just speaks to how much we exalt the Presidency when we should be focusing on other branches as well.

People Biden hired, or people hired by them, played a large role in actually writing the bill with House and Senate leadership. So there's that.

Also, simply by having the wishlist Biden helped keep everyone in line and move quickly; rather than having people go in all sorts of different directions in terms of how to allocate money.

And if there had been something in the bill that Biden hated, and he came out against the bill, there's no way that provision would've stayed in it.

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2 hours ago, IheartIheartTesla said:

I gotta say, Biden is right to take a "victory lap" for the stimulus bill (soon to be law, maybe already is). However, I would say his actual role in getting it through was mostly through creating a wish list and maybe arm twisting (smooth talking?) Manchin a bit during negotiations. Just speaks to how much we exalt the Presidency when we should be focusing on other branches as well.

Feels like a Biden style victory lap would include going all over the country and extolling the contributions of everyone else, not himself. You know, unlike the previous occupant...

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11 minutes ago, Fez said:

Guess the publishing office pulled an all-nighter...

 

I'm a classisist myself.  I'd prefer they waited a few more weeks and had the bill milled onto platinum and palladium plates and then printed in gold ink before we soil Biden's ha ds with some cheap shit but I guess in a time of crisis I can live with this.  

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1 hour ago, Martell Spy said:

Well, something this large only gets passed with a President backing it. And Biden had to hold firm at his original funding number. At the very least give him credit for not getting drawn down the bipartisan wormhole with Collins and gang.

Damn betcha!

Plus today I am particularly, personally so grateful to Our President Biden for making it possible that finally, as of yesterday Partner finally got the first dose of vaccine (Pfizer) and today I got mine (Moderna), and that both of us appointments already scheduled for the second dose.  Which latter, the friends we have who got vaccinated earlier didn't get, due to the shortage and uncertainty of supply -- and the idiocy of both our governor and mayor to come up with any kind of coherent methodology for vaccination.  People before had to do the entire 3-card monte game all over again to get their second vaccination in a lot of NY locations (not all, but many).

Without President Biden's team working and his backing, i.e., if previous was still running shyte, I'd probably be without getting vaccinated until next year.  Or ever.

 

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I thought today was Friday, which caused me a full 30 minutes of confusion as to why everyone was surprised the bill would be signed today.

Is there going to be a mad dash of people trying to file their taxes before month-end? Last year some folks (myself included) may have made choices in their tax-filing that impacted their stimulus payments, but everything went to sh*t right around or after tax season. This year hopefully everyone is more prepared.

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13 minutes ago, IheartIheartTesla said:

I thought today was Friday, which caused me a full 30 minutes of confusion as to why everyone was surprised the bill would be signed today.

Is there going to be a mad dash of people trying to file their taxes before month-end? Last year some folks (myself included) may have made choices in their tax-filing that impacted their stimulus payments, but everything went to sh*t right around or after tax season. This year hopefully everyone is more prepared.

Suppose it depends on if your income increased or decreased from 2019 to 2020; you want whichever is lower if it crosses the phase-out points for the stimulus check.

I also imagine a bunch of people who already filed may need to file amended returns now to take advantage of the new tax status of 2020 UI payments.

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4 hours ago, Fez said:

On top of that, Manchin is no longer the only Senate Democrat saying he wants the bill paid for, so those details will definitely need to get sorted out. I would assume a final deal is partially paid-for, but that there's not $4 trillion in new taxes either. Also some amount of time will need to get spent pushing for bipartisan compromise with Republicans so that Manchin is eventually comfortable with passing the bill on a party-line vote. Hopefully it can all be finished before the August recess.

Yeah, it's definitely not just Manchin, or even just Senate Dems - it's House Dems too.  And yeah, it's clear no one expects the payfors to fully account for the spending.  Actually sounds like most of what they want is tax increases on the wealthy in some form - including rolling back Trump's tax cuts which Manchin seems to be for.  Sounds good to me.  Tester's quote, btw, is classic:

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“You’re going to remind me of this [later] when none of it’s paid for,” he deadpanned, “but I do think some of it needs to be paid for.”

Another thing to consider is they may need to include some payfors, at least if they want to abide by the Byrd rule, because I would think some projects/measures could extend passed the 10 year sunset window.  Especially if they include climate change and/or health care initiatives in the ultimate reconciliation bill, which I think they should.  Spend the spring/summer marking up legislation on all three measures in committee - appeasing the "bipartisanship" of the process - and then in September start rolling everything into one omnibus reconciliation bill.

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4 hours ago, Fez said:

Plus, I assume, Breyer will probably retire in June when the current SCOTUS term ends.

Don't jinx it!!!

2 hours ago, IheartIheartTesla said:

However, I would say his actual role in getting it through was mostly through creating a wish list and maybe arm twisting (smooth talking?) Manchin a bit during negotiations. Just speaks to how much we exalt the Presidency when we should be focusing on other branches as well.

I think the process was precisely what it should be.  Biden outlined a clear proposal, then his staff worked with the leadership in Congress to fill in the details with the latter whipping votes in the process, and finally when deals had to be hammered out Biden was the one to call Manchin to get him to relent.  The front-end was more involved than Obama, who was too deferential to Congress, while still not being too micromanaging/centralized in the process so as to alienate congressional allies.

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2 hours ago, Fez said:

Also, simply by having the wishlist Biden helped keep everyone in line and move quickly; rather than having people go in all sorts of different directions in terms of how to allocate money.

It's almost like a guy who spent several decades in the Senate might understand how to keep people in line. One of the big reasons Obama tapped Biden to be his VP was because of his relationships on the Hill.

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If anyone's wondering why the progressives wrested control of the Nevada party apparatus from Harry Reid's political machine, mayhaps is because Reid has gone round the bend:

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It can be difficult to discuss unidentified flying objects, especially for a government. While some may dismiss reports as fantasy, others argue that whatever is going on could be a threat to national security. 

“In the past, pilots were afraid to report these strange things happening—for fear it would affect their advancement in the officer corps,” former Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev., told Nextgov in this episode of Critical Update. While he was in Congress, Reid helped secure funding for the Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program, a quiet, UFO-studying effort that became public in late 2017. That group is now considered a precursor to the Pentagon’s Unidentified Aerial Phenomena Task Force.

“The one thing that we established is that not a dozen people have seen these occurrences. Not 100 of them. Thousands of people have seen them,” Reid explained. People have long been intrigued by the thought of “little green men,” and, according to the former Senate Majority Leader, it’s what people he randomly encounters often ask him about. 

 

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