EDITORIAL: Support for Obamacare Still Can Haunt Joe Manchin in 2012

HNN Staff
The Manchins and the Obamas
The Manchins and the Obamas

We can only imagine what happens when a politician believes his own spin.  Take Joe Manchin, for example.  The Democratic National Committee and Manchin's own press flacks would have us believe that the junior U.S. Senator delights in fighting his own President, Barack Obama.  But on the key issues important to the President, Manchin is there for him, even when two-thirds of West Virginia voters disagree with the President.

For example, take Obamacare.  How often we heard Joe Manchin say in the closing weeks of the Raese/Manchin 2010 that he now opposed Obamcare, even after he embraced it earlier the same year in interviews.  Many in both political parties here discerned that Manchin changed his tune on Obamcare just because his conservative opponent, Republican John Raese, had long had a consistent opposition to the federal government's takeover of our health delivery system.

Those Manchin skeptics were proven 100% correct when, just a few days after being sworn in as West Virginia's junior U.S. Senator this year, Manchin flew right back to President Obama's liberal nest.  Manchin voted for Obamacare in the re-vote, a complete reversal on his late campaign pledge.

Think about that.  In the span of just three months, Joe Manchin did a triple flip:  first being for Obamacare, then stating his firm opposition to it, only to then go back to his original position once the coast was clear and the election over.  That's what we have in our junior U.S. Senator--an unprincipled politician who will say anything, do anything, even on the most important piece of legislation facing the country.

Joe Manchin makes Mitt Romney's flip flops look as consistent as the sunrise.

Beyond the betrayal of his more conservative constituents on this key issue before the country, Manchin's flip flops show an individual who, now in his sixties, still possesses no inner core beyond selfish ambition.  Think fast:  in Manchin's six years as Governor, can you remember a single accomplishment?  No.  But Charleston residents can remember that big party tent that hosted so many gatherings at taxpayer expense. 

And Morgantown residents and WVU students, faculty, and alumni can certainly remember the stench of the Heather Manchin Bresch disaster that nearly wrecked WVU's academic standing, which would have rendered all WVU diplomas as substandard.

We try to rack our minds for anything positive that has come out of Senator Manchin's service to West Virginia, whether in the legislature, as Secretary of State, as Governor, or now the U.S. Senate.  Every step of that lengthy career in politics has seemed to benefit only one person:  Joe Manchin and his family. 

Increasingly, comparisons are being made between Manchin and his famous uncle, A. James, who left statewide office after getting in over his head at the State Treasurer's office.  But there is one significant difference between the two Manchins:  at least A. James had a sense of humor and could poke fun at himself to the crowd's delight. 

As Joe Manchin goes further up the ladder of politics, thinking himself so important to the President that he must side with him even on issues as unpopular as Obamacare, we see a humorless Joe Manchin who takes himself way too seriously.

On Manchin's Obamacare vote and support, West Virginia's voters aren't laughing, either.



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