Manchin seeks 'strategic pause' on Biden bill, opposes $3.5T

By LISA MASCARO AP Congressional Correspondent

WASHINGTON (AP) — Centrist Sen. Joe Manchin says Congress should hit a "strategic pause" on more spending.

The West Virginia Democrat said Thursday he does not support President Joe Biden's plans for a sweeping $3.5 trillion effort to rebuild the economy.

Manchin's comments, in an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal, would deny his party a crucial vote in the evenly split Senate.

His remarks come as lawmakers are laboring behind the scenes to draft the legislation ahead of this month's deadlines.

He cited inflation, national security and other concerns in suggesting they hit pause "instead of rushing to spend trillions on new government programs."

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