Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) is ready to fight Rep. Blake Farenthold (R-TX), according to an interview on CNN Tuesday, and who can blame him?
The West Virginia centrist was responding to a radio interview revealed Monday in which Farenthold said that he wanted to settle the healthcare debate “Aaron Burr style.” He was referring to the duel in which Burr shot and killed Alexander Hamilton.
Farenthold was expressing his anger with some of the female Republican Senators, who have indicated that they are unwilling to support the GOP health care bill that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell crafted behind closed doors and with little input from members.
“I’d be okay to step outside with him,” confessed Manchin. “If he wants to talk on my people in West Virginia and throw them out in the cold, I’m glad Shelly [Moore Capito] (R-WV) understands the constituent base the same as I do. It’s not a perfect bill that we have. The Affordable Care Act is not a perfect piece of legislation. It needs repair. We both agree to that we need to fix it. We need to try to get people healthier. Need to get them accountable.”
He went on to say that many of these things can be done to fix Obamacare but it would require the GOP to come together with the Democratic members. The GOP has shown that they are unwilling to fix Obamacare, they only want to kill it.
“We want to fix and repair things,” Manchin said. “I’ll work with Republicans, liberals conservatives, everybody, but the bottom line, at the end of the day, is that we have a healthier population.”
He later remarked that he “can’t believe” the process and the “calculated rhetoric we see coming from the system.” He called the GOP’s rhetoric outright “uncalled for.”
The Senate is scheduled to vote on the healthcare bill Tuesday afternoon.
Watch the interview below: