EDITORIAL: Joe Manchin: Political Werewolf

HNN Staff
Full Moon at U.S Capitol
Full Moon at U.S Capitol

Like Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Joe Manchin is quickly showing two sides, or rather, two entirely different selves. 

There is West Virginia Joe, who comes back on shows like "Metronews Talkline" now and then to reasure us that he's still his own man up there in D.C.  And then there's the strange creature we have come to call "Washington Joe," sightings of whom are becoming increasingly frequent.

Ominously, the very first such sighting was very early in the junior U.S. Senator's tenure.  Almost as soon as Manchin came to Washington, the revote on Obamacare was taken.  After taking enormous heat for supporting President Obama's controversial health care overhaul, Manchin reversed himself towards the end of his 2010 race against Republican candidate John Raese, promising to vote against Obamacare if he had the chance.

The chance was given to him early...but Washington Joe showed up and voted for Obamacare after all.  Maybe there was a full moon that night.  One thing's for sure, Manchin supporters heard a strange, wolf-like sound, baying at the sky right after that vote.

There have been other such sightings of Washington Joe in this first year in D.C.  Actually, though you'd never guess it, since West Virginia Joe doesn't talk about it on "Talkline," Manchin has voted 85% of the time with President Obama and his Democratic party leaders since coming to D.C. 

To hear West Virginia Joe talk about it on "Talkline," you'd think that he hardly ever voted with that crowd.  But now we know the truth.  West Virginia's junior U.S. Senator is a political werewolf, and whenever a full moon arises over the U.S. Capitol dome, that inner liberal in him must find expression, even at the expense of West Virginians who voted for him.

Now we see a Washington Joe getting more confident, perhaps ready to do away with West Virginia Joe altogether.  At a press conference last week, Washington Joe emerged to say that he thought the very controversial $1 trillion in military cuts proposed by President Obama...did not go far enough.  Say what?!   President Obama's cuts have even been labeled as too damaging to the national defense by his own Secretary of Defense, Leon Panetta.

But Washington Joe maintained with supreme self-confidence that this huge amount of defense cuts didn't go far enough.  When Manchin supporters back home in pro-military West Virginia heard the werewolf cry this time, it must have been like a pair of cymbals crashing over their heads. 

After all, here was Joe Manchin, who always had such nice, sugary-coated speeches to say about our military while Governor.  And now, he wants to gut our military budget even more than Obama does?  Who will muzzle this Washington Joe, this liberal beast?

Stay tuned.  And when the full moon shines over the U.S Capitol dome, gather your children together and batten down the door.  For Washington Joe is on the prowl, shocking friends and pleasing Peace Democrats and President Obama 85% of the time....