So What The Hell Do We Do Now? (Joe Manchin Edition)

By Ezra Levin, Co-Founder & Co-Executive Director, Indivisible

Profile view of West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin in a navy blue suit and purple tie, slouched down in a chair in a Senate Committee room with glasses balanced on the end of his nose, seemingly thinking about how he isn’t going to do his Constitutional duty to protect people’s voting rights and our nation’s democracy.

First, why did Manchin write this op-ed now?

To understand Manchin’s actions, you have to view them in the context of recent events. We’re in the pre-negotiation phase of the democracy reform fight. What you’re seeing is posturing ahead of the showdown.

So what comes next?

All attention has been on Manchin, and to a lesser extent, Senator Sinema, but the real main character in this play is Schumer. As Majority Leader, he controls the Senate calendar. He can’t make the pieces move, but it’s his job to set up the play. Manchin just threw a wrench in the gears, and so now he has to adapt.

What needs to happen

If we’re going to achieve that victory in the coming weeks, three things need to happen:

So, where does that leave us?

Let’s review:

  • We are headed for a series of GOP-led filibusters this month
  • Manchin’s terrible op-ed was intended to take the wind out of our sails
  • The only realistic pathway to victory on democracy reform is a drawn-out legislative fight
  • Victory depends on the full commitment of Biden and Schumer, and historic grassroots engagement

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Indivisible is a locally-led, nationally coordinated movement-building progressive power in every state.

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Indivisible Guide

Indivisible is a locally-led, nationally coordinated movement-building progressive power in every state.