- The Washington Times - Monday, December 20, 2021

White House press secretary Jen Psaki on Monday dismissed talk of a personal spat between President Biden and Sen. Joe Manchin, insisting the president sees the West Virginia Democrat as “a longtime friend.”

“I’m not going to relitigate the tick-tock of yesterday from here today,” Ms. Psaki said. “I will say that from the president’s viewpoint … he’s worked with Mr. Manchin over the course of decades. They share fundamental values. They’re longtime friends. That has not changed.”

Mr. Manchin sent shockwaves through Washington Sunday after he announced that he would not vote for the president’s $2 trillion climate and spending bill that was passed by the House earlier this year.

His comments launched a back-and-forth with the White House. Ms. Psaki responded Sunday with a rare rebuke, accusing Mr. Manchin of reversing his position.

Mr. Manchin hit back Monday morning saying the White House staff miscalculated by trying to pressure him into supporting the president’s agenda. He accused the White House of putting out “some things that were absolutely inexcusable.”

However, he declined to say what he saw as “inexcusable,” adding “they know what it is.”

SEE ALSO: White House accuses Manchin of double-cross on Biden’s Build Back Better Act

Ms. Psaki declined to say whether she know what Mr. Manchin was talking about

“I would point you to Sen. Manchin to outline for you further,” she said.

• Jeff Mordock can be reached at jmordock@washingtontimes.com.

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