Tags: joe manchin | jeff sessions | job | attorney general

Manchin Tells Sessions: 'Keep Doing Your Job'

MSNBC's "Morning Joe"

By    |   Tuesday, 25 Jul 2017 12:54 PM

Attorney General Jeff Sessions should just stay in office and continue doing his job, even though he's facing withering attacks from President Donald Trump over his decision to recuse himself from the investigation into Russian campaign interference and collusion, Sen. Joe Manchin said Tuesday.

"First of all Jeff, keep doing your job," said the West Virginia Democrat, who served with Sessions for years in the Senate, on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" program. "I knew you had the experience and the ability to do and protect the rule of law who we are as Americans that makes us so different from the rest of the world."

However, Sessions knew that when he took on the job of attorney general, it means he works at the will and pleasure of the president.

"The president has the right to put his team together," said Manchin. "I just would say that the next person, if Jeff's not going to be there, the next person's going to have a much more strenuous time coming through the confirmation process. We want to make sure people in the Justice Department put the rule of law above any one human being or any one party."

Manchin also discussed the upcoming Obamacare vote during a "Fox & Friends" interview, saying that senators on both sides of the aisle agree Obamacare needs to be fixed, as it's not working, but the measure needs to go back to committee for further work, not on the floor for a vote, Sen. Joe Manchin said Tuesday.

"If we vote to proceed, that's the same as voting to repeal," Manchin told the Fox News program. "You're not going to be able to fix it on the floor. It needs to be fixed in committee."

Show co-host Steve Doocy argued with Manchin, telling him that he doesn't know if that's accurate and "you're a senator."

"You're going to vote on the motion to proceed, and then they bring up a bill, and there's a bunch of bills to choose from or [Senate Majority Leader] Mitch [McConnell] and company are going to come up with something else. And then you and every other U.S. Senator can offer up amendments and change it to any way you want it," Doocy said. "But it looks to a lot of people, senator, like the Democrats are just the party of 'no.'"

"I wish it was the way you just described it," the West Virginia Democrat told Doocy. "But that's not the way it works in the real world. First of all, the majority leader controls what amendments, and they can shut down the amendment process. The only way you have an open, unfeathered opportunity is to put the amendments in the committee. That's why what we call going through regular order."

If the bill went through regular order and all had their shot at it, Manchin said, then he'd agree, "But that's not what we're doing. We don't have that opportunity. You can't bring the expert witnesses in. You can't look at the facts. You can't make your decision. You can't have your debates. You can have limited debates based on white blood cells controlling what you can talk about. That's what we're in right now, and that's why I'm opposed to it."

Manchin, also a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, further discussed comments made by President Donald Trump's son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner denying Russian collusion.

"This all could have been cleared up back in November," when Kushner did his security clearance filings, said Manchin. "I know elections. I've been in many campaigns, and I know they just get away from you. I can understand that. I sympathize with that. But still, you have a responsibility, you have a campaign manager who's supposed to keep you within the lanes. So somebody failed them."

The facts need to be revealed, said Manchin, and then lawmakers need to move on.

"There's so many things we need to do in this country," said Manchin. "We need to get healthcare. We need to get that solidified, we need to get tax reform, we need to get infrastructure."

When Doocy told him he sounds like Trump with the comment, Manchin said he does not care what party one is from, "if you're an American, you want your president to do well and you try everything you can."

"I told the president if I disagree, it will be respectful," he continued. "I'll try to work with you. But there are some other ways to handle this, and I wish we could help more."

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Attorney General Jeff Sessions should just stay in office and continue doing his job, even though he's facing withering attacks from President Donald Trump over his decision to recuse himself from the investigation into Russian campaign interference and collusion, Sen. Joe...
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Tuesday, 25 Jul 2017 12:54 PM
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