Biden adviser optimistic Manchin will help on climate
White House national climate adviser Gina McCarthy is optimistic about enlisting Sen. Joe Manchin's help on a potential climate bill, she told Axios during an Earth Day event Friday.
Why it matters: Manchin has recently signaled that he'd support some climate provisions as part of a pared-down version of the Build Back Better Act, which failed in Congress after Manchin turned against it and Republicans solidly opposed it.
- Yes, but: Progressives in Congress worry such provisions would be heavier on energy independence favored by Big Oil — and lighter on the carbon reduction they seek, Axios' Hans Nichols reported in March.
- “When he says he wants to act on climate, I think it's quite understandable that people would meet that with a great deal of disbelief,” Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) told Axios at the time.
McCarthy sounded more optimistic on the prospects of a deal during conversation with Axios' Mike Allen Friday.
- "I know he's interested in significant investments that will advance climate. And so I'm hoping that there will be a meeting of the minds," McCarthy said.
- "But I think it goes beyond hope. I think where we're actually going to show him and others that these are necessary investments, not sacrifices, but the ways in which we're going to deliver for the American public.
- "There's things he wants to, things we want, and that means we should be able to get an agreement and move forward in Congress."
What she's saying:
"We are perfectly positioned to build on the work we've already done and make that path to a clean energy future ... and we're going to do our best to work with Senator Manchin. There's things he wants to, things we want, and that means we should be able to get an agreement and move forward in Congress."— White House national climate adviser Gina McCarthy
The bottom line: McCarthy said she's "pretty confident" Congress can pass climate legislation even during an election year, after it passed a bipartisan infrastructure law last year that contained numerous climate measures.
- "The president is really doubling down on his commitments now and his demand that Congress work with him ... So we can't stop now. We have to move forward and it's exciting because we can."