During an interview on “Fox News Sunday,” host Bret Baier confronted Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) with his own words after he went back on his promise not to support any legislation that could exacerbate inflation.
The Fox News host repeatedly cornered Manchin with his own past statements, emphasizing how the so-called “Inflation Reduction Act” violates his past positions.
One past statement, from 2010, showed Manchin stating: “I don’t think during a time of recession you mess with any of the taxes or increase any taxes.”
The West Virginia Democrat reiterated those comments just last month.
Thus, Baier said to Manchin, “Now technically we’re in a recession, and technically, according to multiple different organizations, this bill does raise taxes,” citing analysis from both the Tax Foundation and Americans for Tax Reform.
The Schumer-Manchin bill (the “Inflation Reduction Act”) would increase taxes by over $16.7 billion in 2023 for households with income under $200,000.
(Source: Joint Committee on Taxation.) pic.twitter.com/7U9frOMpKZ
— Michael R. Strain (@MichaelRStrain) August 1, 2022
Responding to Baier, the Democrat senator claimed that the Inflation Reduction Act does not raise taxes, asserting that it only closes tax loopholes. Manchin went on to directly challenge any assertion that the legislation imposes new taxes or will exacerbate inflation.
“They’re wrong; it does not raise taxes,” the senator said.
Baier went on to remind Manchin about his previous statements regarding inflation, specifically about the American Rescue Plan — President Joe Biden’s COVID-19 pandemic relief bill.
Last March, the West Virginia Democrat stated that Biden’s bill would not overheat the economy nor trigger an inflation crisis — except that is exactly what happened.
“Why should Americans believe you now when you say that this bill will not exacerbate inflation?” the Fox News host asked.
“I’ll make sure I don’t make that mistake again,” Manchin responded, suggesting he acknowledges that he was wrong. “Bottom line, I’ll make sure I didn’t make that mistake again… that’s why I was extra cautious right now.”
Baier then confronted the Democrat senator with a Penn Wharton Budget Model analysis predicting that the legislation “would very slightly increase inflation until 2024 and decrease inflation thereafter.”
The report also revealed that its “estimates are statistically indistinguishable from zero, thereby indicating low confidence that the legislation will have any impact on inflation.”
Manchin responded that he “respectfully disagrees” with the analysis, while refusing to explain why he believes it is incorrect.