President Joe Biden’s surprising dig at two members of his own party has raised questions about his legislative strategy ahead of a summer that experts expect to be dominated by his priorities fizzling on the Senate floor.
The White House may have downplayed Biden’s veiled swipe earlier this week at Sens. Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona. But the dig previews the pressure the two centrists will soon face as their opposition to changing the Senate’s filibuster rules to allow legislation to pass with 51 votes stymies Biden’s plans.
Lawmakers do not appreciate being threatened or coerced, according to Middlebury College political science professor Bertram Johnson. Yet, Johnson described Biden’s jab at Manchin and Sinema as “far from a direct attack.”
He added that appearing independent from the White House may even boost the senators’ popularity in their home