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Chaos as Biden ignores Manchin questions during COP26 walk

Chaos as Biden ignores Manchin questions from crowd of reporters at COP26: President pushes Build Back Better World and urges global leaders to move away from coal while his domestic agenda stalls again

  • President Joe Biden pushed his Build Back Better World agenda at the COP26 summit as his domestic agenda was falling apart back in the United States 
  • ‘Build Back Better World will be an integral part of our fight against climate change by helping countries build sustainable, clean infrastructure,’ he said
  • But back in States, Biden’s enormous social agenda was in trouble after Senator Joe Manchin expressed doubt he could support it
  • Biden didn’t answer questions shouted to him about Manchin
  • There was chaos as Biden walked through center with reporters shouting at him 


President Joe Biden pushed his Build Back Better World agenda on Tuesday at the COP26 summit as his domestic agenda was falling apart back in the United States. 

The president gave his world vision during his second day at the UN Climate Summit, speaking at a panel with European Commission President Ursula Von der Leyen, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, British PM Boris Johnson and Japanese PM Fumio Kishida.

‘Build Back Better World will be an integral part of our fight against climate change by helping countries build sustainable, clean infrastructure and the enormous economic opportunity it presents,’ Biden said. 

His message came as his $1.75 trillion social agenda plan was torpedoed by a member of his own political party: moderate Democratic Senator Joe Manchin.

Manchin, in a shocking move, announced on Monday that he wouldn’t support Biden’s plan without ample time to consider its economic and fiscal ramifications. In the 50-50 Senate, the president needs every Democratic vote to pass his agenda. 

Biden didn’t respond to questions shouted to him about Manchin during his event at the UN Climate Summit in Glasgow. 

And there was chaos in the convention center as the president walked through the crowd from one event to another, moving past a group of reporters who shouted more questions about Manchin that Biden didn’t respond to.

President Joe Biden is guided through the crowded COP26 conference center while surrounded by a crowd of reporters and staffers 

There was chaos in the convention center as the president walked through the crowd from one event to another, moving past a group of reporters who shouted more questions about Manchin that Biden didn't respond to

There was chaos in the convention center as the president walked through the crowd from one event to another, moving past a group of reporters who shouted more questions about Manchin that Biden didn’t respond to

In his remarks,  Manchin also slammed House Democrats for not passing a bipartisan infrastructure bill already approved by the Senate. Progressives in the House have refused to support that legislation until they have assurances from Manchin and fellow moderate Senator Kyrsten Sinema that they will support the package of social programs.

Biden refused to answer questions about Senator Joe Manchin torpedoing his domestic agenda

Biden refused to answer questions about Senator Joe Manchin torpedoing his domestic agenda

‘Holding that bill hostage is not going to work to get my support of what you want,’ Manchin said of the infrastructure bill.

And the West Virginia senator said of the social package: ‘I’m open to supporting a final bill that helps move our country forward, but I’m equally open to voting against a bill that hurts our country.’ 

In his remarks to COP26 on Tuesday, Biden announced the United States intended to move forward on a pledge made at June’s G7 meeting to move away from coal plants. Coal is a huge industry in West Virginia and Biden removed some of his clean energy provisions from his social agenda package in order to appease Manchin.

But Biden also noted there is an obligation to take care of coal workers who will be affected by any changes. 

‘We have to take care of the people who are impacted and provide alternatives for them as well,’ the president said. 

President Joe Biden, center left, speaks with European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, center right, as they walk down through COP26 center

President Joe Biden, center left, speaks with European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, center right, as they walk down through COP26 center

The pair walked through the crowds on the way to the next event at the COP26 on Tuesday

The pair walked through the crowds on the way to the next event at the COP26 on Tuesday

President Joe Biden and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson at the Build Back Better World event at the COP26 summit

President Joe Biden and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson at the Build Back Better World event at the COP26 summit

Manchin spoke four days after Biden visited Capitol Hill to announce he had a framework plan he thought Democrats could agree to, which included two years of free pre-K, some expanded Medicaid benefits and some climate change programs. 

But the president’s original vision was cut nearly in half to secure Manchin and Sinema’s support while keeping the liberal wing of the party on board. 

Manchin charged the bill is filled with ‘shell games’ and ‘budget gimmicks’ that would end up costing far more than its $1.75 trillion price tag. 

White House press secretary Jen Psaki responded in a statement: ‘We remain confident that the plan will gain Senator Manchin’s support.’ 

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