Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) is warning President Biden against berating Republicans during his State of the Union speech on Tuesday evening.
“Reset it. Say today is a new day. Recalibrate,” Manchin said during an appearance on Fox News hours before Biden was set to address a joint session of Congress. “He could not have accomplished everything they’re taking credit for without our Republican friends for working with us. Take credit for that.”
Manchin, a moderate senator from a state that has voted overwhelmingly for Republicans in national elections in recent cycles, often holds the key vote Democrats need in the upper chamber as they work to advance their various agenda items.
Some Republican lawmakers and pundits have blasted Biden in recent months for comments criticizing “ultra MAGA” Republicans who are supportive of former President Trump during high-profile speeches and statements.
“Don’t just berate people just because they happen to have a D or an R next to their name. That’s what America is sick and tired of,” Manchin said of what he would advise Biden to say during his speech. “So he can set that. He’s the leader of the free world. Reset that tonight.”
The West Virginia lawmaker, who often angers members of the Democratic Party’s more progressive wing and is up for reelection in 2024, also this week kept speculation alive about his own presidential aspirations as a third-party candidate, telling reporters Tuesday, “I don’t like the direction we’re going” and declining to rule out a future bid for the White House.