WEST VIRGINIA (WOAY) – “All of you might be surprised but there should be no surprises because I’ve never walked away from anything in my life, and I just felt that there was an opportunity here to really give us an energy policy with security that we need for our nation.”
In a surprising turn of events Wednesday, Senator Joe Manchin and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer announced a new expansive agreement. They are deeming it the ‘Inflation Reduction Act of 2022’ (IRA).
Its aim is to provide relief in a number of inflation-sensitive areas by increasing taxes on the wealthy and large corporations, lowering healthcare costs, and providing efficient energy security provisions.
“We don’t raise taxes on anybody, and anyone who says we are raising taxes by putting a minimum of 15% corporate tax on corporations, largest corporations of a billion dollars or greater that that’s going to be inflammatory, If someone’s upset whose not paying anything, please come forward,” Manchin says.
A longtime advocate for fossil fuels in West Virginia, one specific aspect of Sen. Manchin’s agreement would invest in carbon-based and clean energy technologies while reducing methane and carbon emissions.
For months, Manchin urged President Biden and Democratic leaders to abandon more expensive and ambitious measures for tackling such issues. But, now at $360 billion going to clean energy technologies, it could be the largest spending package in U.S history.
“Energy security and climate, truly where we have two paths, we have a robust energy for our fossils so we have a clear pathway where we can basically compete, be energy independent not depending on foreign nations,” he says.
It’s expected for the Senate to vote on the 725-page agreement next week.
The bill potentially sets up an unexpected victory for President Biden and Democrats in the run-up to the November elections. But a House vote is also expected to follow, with an anticipated unanimous vote of opposition from the Republican Party.