Mike Pence Came After Trump Country Democrat on His Home Turf, Regretted It Almost Immediately

WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS, WV - JANUARY 31: U.S. Vice President Mike Pence addresses a dinner at the 2018 House & Senate Republican Member Conference January 31, 2018 at the Greenbrier resort in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia. Congressional Republicans gather at their annual retreat, hosted by the Congressional Institute, to discuss legislative agenda for the year. (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

During a visit to Lewisburg, West Virginia, Vice President Mike Pence delivered a speech which criticized Democrat Senator Joe Manchin for his vote against the GOP tax plan. The speech went over quite well, considering President Donald Trump enjoys considerable popularity in the state. (In fact, a Gallup poll found this week that it’s his best state, with a 61 percent approval rating.)

Given that a majority of West Virginians support the president, and that Manchin is up for a reelection this year, Pence's criticisms were expertly timed. You can read his complete remarks via The White House's official website, and his specific remarks against Manchin are highlighted below:

Now, let me take a moment here just to make sure you give credit where credit is due on this. I want to thank your leaders in Congress — Congressman McKinley, Congressman Jenkins, and Senator Capito. They stood with President Trump. They voted for this tax cut. They put West Virginia families first.

The truth is, they voted to give West Virginia workers a raise. But the same can’t be said of your other Senator. People of the Mountain State, you deserve to know, when it came to cutting your taxes, Joe voted no.

You know, I was here just a few months ago. I spoke at the West Virginia Chamber of Commerce. Senator Manchin was there. I looked him in the eye and I told him — I said “Joe, the people of the Mountain State are counting on you.” And I said, “Let’s get this tax cut done together.” But Joe voted no. Joe voted no to give working families more of your hard-earned money. Joe voted no on tax cuts for job creators.

And on expanding the Child Tax Credit, giving you your first $24,000 in income tax-free — real breaks for families in West Virginia — Joe voted no.

But it’s not just the tax cut. Senator Joe Manchin has voted no time and again on the policies that West Virginia needs. When the time came to repeal and replace the disaster of Obamacare, Joe voted no. When we empowered West Virginia to defund Planned Parenthood, Joe voted no. And when it comes to that wall that we’re going to build on the southern border, Joe said, quote, “Well, I’m not voting for the wall, either.”

Folks, Joe’s just going to keep voting against West Virginia. Now that might make Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi pretty happy, but West Virginia needs to let him know you expect better from Joe. You need to let Joe know that West Virginia deserves better in Washington, DC.

But you can be assured, President Trump and I are going to keep fighting. We’re going to keep fighting for the men and women of West Virginia and all across this country. And we’ll always put your interests first.

Pence even shared some of his criticisms on Twitter.

Manchin soon took to his personal Twitter account to fire back criticisms of his own. “The VP’s comments are exactly why Washington Sucks," he wrote, in part.

Senator Manchin further accused the vice president of launching unwarranted partisan attacks which have only served to divide West Virginians. "My record speaks for itself," he wrote.

He ended his response with a call for Pence to "show better leadership qualities."

The GOP tax bill isn't "exactly tailored to the needs of the state," notes The Daily Beast's Michael Tomasky (a West Virginian in his own right), who points to West Virginia's high rates of uninsured people and "a raging drug crisis and all kinds of bleak health care indicia." He also notes that while Manchin did, in fact, vote to cut Planned Parenthood's funding in 2015 after a "heavily edited" video featuring the PPFA person speaking "cavalierly" about fetal organs made the rounds, Manchin voted against a Republican funding bill following an investigation which found that Planned Parenthood was not involved in any nefarious activities.

Manchin is one of the few Congressional Democrats to enjoy a cordial relationship with President Trump. He was spotted giving the president several standing ovations during Tuesday night's State of the Union address.

Blaze TV

Continuing a steady slide to the right since her tenure as President Donald Trump's United Nations ambassador, former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley is under heat for recent comments regarding the Confederate flag.

The comments came during an interview with far-Right Blaze TV host Glenn Beck.

Keep reading... Show less
Fox News

Former Vice President and current 2020 Presidential candidate Joe Biden erupted at a man during an Iowa town hall who accused him of actively working to get his son Hunter a board position on the Ukrainian energy company Burisma Holdings. Biden called the man a "damn liar" before challenging him to pushups.

Republicans seized on the moment as an opportunity to discredit Biden as a candidate, but Fox and Friends cohost Ainsley Earhardt's reaction may be the most deluded yet.

Keep reading... Show less
Bryan Woolston/Getty Images // @parscale/Twitter

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) has repeatedly made clear that, after President Donald Trump solicited Ukrainian leaders to announce investigations that personally benefitted him, the decision to launch impeachment proceedings wasn't a political maneuver, but a constitutional mandate.

The move came after years of Trump's supporters, as well as some critics, insisted that impeachment would be political suicide for the Democrats.

Since shortly after the inquiry's announcement in September, support for impeachment outweighed its oppositon as more revelations surfaced of Trump's dealings with Ukraine, but his 2020 campaign manager Brad Parscale attempted to show that Pelosi's move to impeach would lose Democrats their House majority.

Keep reading... Show less

Shortly after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) announced that representatives would begin drafting articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy took the podium to defend the President and the Republican party as a whole.

It could've gone better.

Keep reading... Show less
SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images // MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images

One day after the House Judiciary Committee's hearing on impeachment, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) held a press conference announcing that the House would begin drafting articles of impeachment, with a possible floor vote as soon as Christmas.

The press conference signaled the beginning of the end of the impeachment inquiry in the House.

Keep reading... Show less
Salwan Georges/The Washington Post via Getty Images

The House Judiciary Committee, in its public impeachment hearing against President Donald Trump on Wednesday, consulted four constitutional scholars for greater insight to the legal implications of the President's Ukraine scandal—and whether they merit impeachment.

Three witnesses, called by Democrats, each made compelling arguments for the articles of impeachment with which Trump could be charged.

George Washington University professor Jonathan Turley—invited by Republicans—was the lone dissenter.

Keep reading... Show less