Rep. Bowman: 'White man' Joe Manchin doesn't care about Black people, immigrants, poor

Bowman furious over Manchin's opposition to Build Back Better

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Rep. Jamaal Bowman, D-N.Y., became the latest Democrat to attack Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., in personal terms on Monday, accusing him of not caring about African Americans and other minority groups "as a White man."

The far-left Progressive Caucus member ripped Manchin on CNN over his opposition to Build Back Better, the $1.75 trillion social policy and climate package backed by the Biden White House, saying he was "tremendously frustrated" and "infuriated" with the West Virginia Democrat.

"It went from 3.5 trillion to 1.75 trillion [dollars] because him, his special interests, his donors, and lobbyists were cutting the bill for several months, because they did not want this bill to pass," Bowman said. "Why? Because this bill disproportionately supports people of color. It supports women. It supports children. It supports those who are poor and lifts them out of poverty. Why wouldn’t Manchin want to support that when this would benefit West Virginia tremendously? 

Jamaal Bowman and Joe Manchin

Jamaal Bowman and Joe Manchin

"It’s tremendously frustrating for me as a Black man in America because once again, it’s an example of Joe Manchin as a White man showing that he doesn’t care about Black people, he doesn’t care about Latinos, he doesn’t care about immigrants, he doesn’t care about women, and he doesn’t care about the poor. He is a millionaire, and he has the privilege to kick the can down the road and not vote for this bill while the people in my district are suffering."

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Bowman went on to suggest Manchin had been bought by lobbyists and that big money in Washington had to go, or else "we don't have a democracy." Left-wing CNN host Laura Coates, filling in for Don Lemon on his nightly program, praised Bowman for his "well-said and articulated" remarks about what is "really at stake here" and what Manchin's true motivations were.

Bowman, a Democratic socialist who's in his first term, follows other progressives who have spent the past two days railing against Manchin after he effectively torpedoed the laundry list of progressive agenda items. 

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Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., said Manchin was untrustworthy and his "excuses" were "bulls--t," while Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., said the situation was a "farce" and wrongly suggested she represented more people in Congress than him. Some liberal journalists also blasted Manchin, with Politico's Sam Stein saying it was "devastating" for the planet and Washington Post columnist Jennifer Rubin writing democracy is "hanging by a thread."

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez as Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg testifies before the House Financial Services Committee in Capitol Hill, Washington, D.C., on Oct. 23, 2019. 

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez as Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg testifies before the House Financial Services Committee in Capitol Hill, Washington, D.C., on Oct. 23, 2019.  (Aurora Samperio/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Manchin told "Fox News Sunday" that he had tried to get to a point of final agreement with the Biden White House but couldn't in the end.

"I've done everything humanly possible," he told host Bret Baier.

The House passed a version of the bill last month, but it always faced an uphill climb in the 50-50 U.S. Senate, with moderates like Manchin and Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, D-Ariz., balking at its lack of pay-fors and exorbitant cost.

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With Manchin and all 50 Republicans firmly in opposition, the bill as it stands has no chance of passage, although Democrats still hope to resuscitate it in 2022.

Fox News' Brandon Gillespie contributed to this report.