NEW YORK — Dear Senator Manchin:
Why do you associate with people who hate you? You should work with those who appreciate you: Join the Republican Party!
Your stiff upper lip surely masks dismay at the vicious, ugly rhetoric that the Democrat Left has unleashed upon you since you announced on Sunday in the Charleston Gazette-Mail: “I will vote against the For the People Act,” and added about H.R. 1, “I believe that partisan voting legislation will destroy the already weakening binds of our democracy.” You surely infuriated your former allies when you declared, “I will not vote to weaken or eliminate the filibuster.”
The Left also is angry at you for not backing President Biden’s $2.2 trillion “infrastructure” bill that budgets 6 percent to bridges and tunnels and 94 percent to “social infrastructure” and “sustainable” eco-unicorns. West Virginia coal need not apply.
Your fellow Democrats could have called you mistaken, misguided, or even overly eager to reach across the aisle toward Republicans. That criticism would have been civil.
Instead, the Democrat-Left kicked open a basket of cobras and sent them slithering your way, their fangs squirting venom.
•“The left hates Joe Manchin,” a Politico headline stated Monday. “Of course I’m frustrated. Who isn’t frustrated?” asked one anonymous Senate Democrat. “Do you want to see the patches where I pulled my hair out?”
•Rep. Mondaire Jones (D – New York) wrote via Twitter that Manchin’s op-ed “might as well be titled, ‘Why I’ll vote to preserve Jim Crow.’”
•“Joe Manchin isn’t moved by leaders who have spent decades organizing for civil rights,” said Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D – New York). “Manchin is only moved by corporate donors and their agenda.”
•Rep. Mark Pocan (D – Wisconsin) remarked: “We didn’t need an op-ed to know you’re unwilling to protect our democracy.”
•“It’s time for people of all differences to stand together against him,” Poor People’s Campaign co-chair Rev. William Barber told Religion News Service. Barber is staging a Moral March on Manchin next Monday. Barber said that Manchin is “hurting not just black people, but white people, brown people and particularly poor and low-wealth people.” Barber continued, “We have to bear witness to how his policies are hurting the democracy [and] are a form of political and legislative violence.”
•“Record number of black voters show up to save this democracy, only for white supremacy to be upheld by a cowardly, power-hungry white dude,” Jemele Hill, a contributor to The Atlantic magazine, wrote via Twitter. “Senator Joe Manchin is a clown.”
Why do you put up with this?
If those on the Democrat-Left think this little of you, it’s time for you to reach fully across the aisle and join the Republican conference.
Such a move would recall Ronald Reagan’s words: “I didn’t leave the Democrat Party. The Democrat Party left me.”
Your evolution to the GOP would mirror that of your governor, Jim Justice. He switched from Democrat to Republican in August 2017. You are West Virginia’s sole Democrat elected statewide.
Your constituents also have taken a jump to the Right. The Associated Press reported February 11 that 448,900 (36.8 percent) of West Virginians are registered Republicans, while 444,600 remain Democrats (36.5 percent, down from 50 percent in 2014). Some 275,000 (22.6 percent) are unaffiliated.
Barring your flip-flops on the filibuster, H.R. 1, D.C. statehood, and Joe Biden’s record-smashing, $6 trillion, one-year spend-o-rama, Democrats will keep treating you like a Klansman at a Black Lives Matter rally. This must hurt more than it tickles. Unless you are a closet masochist, your discomfort will deepen daily.
Stop letting your so-called friends torture you. Instead, join the party that shares your commitment to the Constitution, Senate rules, adult debate, relative fiscal restraint, and national unity.
Your life would be much easier as U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (R – West Virginia). If so, millions of citizens, from Wheeling to Westwood, would thank you for keeping America the greatest nation on Earth.
Deroy Murdock is a Manhattan-based Fox News Contributor, a contributing editor with National Review Online, and a senior fellow with the London Center for Policy Research. Bucknell University’s Michael Malarkey contributed research to this opinion piece.
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