Activists from West Virginia have been protesting in kayaks outside of Sen. Joe Manchin’s (D-W.Va.) houseboat in Washington for the past week.
The groups protesting included Greenpeace USA, Young West Virginia, Race Matters WV, CASA, and the Center for Popular Democracy Action were outside the “Almost Heaven,” bearing banners reading, “No Climate No Deal,” and “Don’t Sink West Virginia.”
Kayakers and boaters came together in unity in their support for investments into healthcare, climate action, and jobs in the Build Back Better Act.
“West Virginians have been trying to reach Sen. Manchin every way we know how to tell him we need this bill to bring jobs to WV, to extend the Child Tax Credit for our families, to expand access to healthcare, to fund the home care our elderly and disabled community members deserve, Loretta Young, the executive director of Race Matters WV, said in a statement 79% of West Virginians want this bill! And yet, Sen. Manchin is still blocking it. He’s not listening to us, he’s listening to Big Money. That’s why we’re here at his yacht in DC today. The faith community back in WV is now praying and fasting throughout the month of September. When human intervention doesn’t do the job, what else is there but divine intervention?”
Sen. Manchin responded to a protester who said we need to tax the rich, ‘I agree with that. (taxing the rich) That’s the one number thing we should be doing is fixing the tax goats. Everybody pays their fair share. We should be also negotiating for lower drug prices.’
Sen. Manchin has been opposed to his own party’s spending bill of $3.5 trillion and would like to see it cut down to $1.5 trillion.
At the end of the exchange, Manchin reportedly invites the group to the Capitol to discuss their issues even more.