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Manchin disputes data showing social spending bill would raise taxes on middle class during recession

As the United States enters a recession following two quarters of negative growth, Sen. Joe Manchin is disputing data that shows his bill would raise taxes on the middle class during such the tough economy.

“We have to agree to disagree, a difference of opinion,” Manchin, D-W.Va., said when asked by Fox News Digital about an analysis from the nonpartisan Joint Committee on taxation showing his bill would hike middle class taxes.

The committee’s analysis said Manchin’s bill, officially titled the “Inflation Reduction Act,” would raise 2023 taxes on six of eight income categories lower than $200,000. 

Manchin quickly pivoted away from Fox News Digital’s question to discuss parts of the bill he says should be bipartisan.

“My Republican colleagues are my friends and I’ve worked with them tremendously. And I will continue to work with them any way, shape or form,” Manchin said. “But these are things that we’ve all talked about in bipartisan groups. How can we start paying down our debt and… take our finances seriously, our financial house in order? These are things every time we get together as a group, bipartisan support, this is what we talk about. How can we get more production?”

Nevertheless, Republicans say Manchin’s legislation, which he announced with Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., last week, makes no sense during a technical recession after two quarters of the economy shrinking.

“The median household income in West Virginia is $48,037. This bill will raise taxes of Americans making well below those levels in order to help families making more than five times those levels purchase electric cars,” Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, tweeted this weekend. 

Cornyn was citing a provision in the bill that would provide up to a $7,500 tax credit for families making up to $300,000 to buy certain electric vehicles. 

Manchin also pushed back on the idea that his bill will raise taxes on the middle class in separate comments. 

“There’s not one penny of change in taxes, I have no idea where they’re coming down,” Manchin said. “The only thing that was done… if you are a company of a billion dollars or more… you should pay at least a minimum of 15%.”

Manchin further said that, “I can’t believe that they would say” the bill would affect average Americans’ taxes. 

“It’s not going to affect… not at all,” he said. 

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