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Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) said Thursday he is not willing to abolish the legislative filibuster if Republicans block the creation of a bipartisan commission to investigate the deadly Jan. 6 Capitol riot, which they are set to do within hours.

Why it matters: Manchin — a crucial moderate swing vote — has blasted GOP leadership over the Jan. 6 commission and said "there is no excuse for any Republican to vote against" the bill. But his view has still not changed on eliminating or altering the filibuster, even if it prevents his party from passing key legislation.

What they're saying: "I'm not willing to destroy our government, no," Manchin said when asked if he would vote to end the filibuster if Republicans blocked the commission.

  • "I think we'll come together. You have to have faith there's ten good people," he added, referring to the 10 Republicans that Democrats need to reach the 60-vote threshold.
  • "The truth will set you free," Manchin said when asked what his message was to Republicans who are still holding out.

The big picture: Only two Senate Republicans — Sen. Lisa Murkowski (Alaska) and Sen. Mitt Romney (Utah) — have publicly supported the legislation, which passed the House of Representatives last week with the support of 35 Republicans.

  • Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) has indicated she also supports setting up a commission, but said she believes the bill has "flaws" that need to be corrected. Other Senate Republicans have expressed concerns that the commission will be "weaponized" to damage them politically in the 2022 midterms.
  • Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) publicly opposed the bill last week, calling it a "slanted and unbalanced proposal.” On Thursday, he said on the Senate floor that the commission is "extraneous" and that the Justice Department is already conducting a massive investigation.

The mother of the late Capitol Police officer Brian Sicknick, who suffered two strokes and died the day after responding to rioters on Jan. 6, is requesting sit-downs with Republican senators this week to push them to support the commission.

Go deeper

Mother of late Capitol Police officer pressures GOP senators on Jan. 6 commission

A Capitol Police officer covers his face while watching the ceremony for the late Officer Brian Sicknick on Feb. 3, 2021. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

The mother of the late Capitol Police officer Brian Sicknick, who suffered two strokes and died the day after responding to rioters on Jan. 6, is requesting sit-downs with Republican senators this week to push for an investigation into the Capitol attack, Politico reports.

Why it matters: Republicans are set to filibuster the proposal to create a bipartisan Jan. 6 commission when Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) brings it for a vote this week, despite some GOP support in the House and initial bipartisan agreement that an investigation is needed.

May 27, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Republicans' Hail Mary on infrastructure

President Biden meets with Senate Republicans in February. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

Some Senate Republicans might agree to add to the national debt to pay for a scaled-back infrastructure plan, senators and aides told Axios — one more grasp at a deal with President Biden before Democrats pack up and go it alone.

Why it matters: Skipping over the thorny question of how to offset up to $1 trillion in new projects could actually be politically and philosophically easier for GOP lawmakers than agreeing on tax increases.

Bipartisan group of lawmakers preparing new infrastructure package

Sen. Joe Manchin. Photo: Leigh Vogel-Pool/Getty Images

A bipartisan group of senators are preparing a separate infrastructure proposal after negotiations between the White House and Republicans stalled, Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) confirmed to Axios Tuesday.

Why it matters: The new package would narrow the definition of infrastructure and do away with some of the initiatives Democrats have pushed to include, such as funding for elder care and electric vehicles, according to the Washington Post, which first reported the news.