Manchin faces pressure from Gillibrand and other colleagues on paid family leave

Senator Joe manchinJoe Manchin Photos of the Week: Former Sen. Dole in State, Capitol Sunset and Instagrinch Night Health Care – Brought to you by AstraZeneca and Friends of Cancer Research – Court drops ban on cancer Texas abortion clears money lawsuits – Inflation peaks nearly 40 years CONTINUED (DW.Va.) faces increasing pressure from colleagues to back a Democrat-funded federal family and medical leave plan as the party seeks to complete work on a massive $ 2 trillion social spending program. dollars.

Manchin has pushed back in recent months efforts by his colleagues to push forward a proposal for a universal paid vacation program in a Democratic-only bill that his party aims to push through Congress without GOP support, insisting on the fact that it should be done on a bipartite basis.

But a number of Democrats, especially those who have struggled to find support for similar proposals and don’t want to miss the opportunity, are not giving up and are putting the pressure on.

“My message to my colleague is this: If you ever want to meet the needs of your lower and middle income workers, who will probably never work in a fancy company that can afford paid time off, it is is your only shot for them, ”Senator Kristen Gillibrand (DN.Y.), longtime paid vacation activist, said at a press conference Thursday.

Under the current plan being discussed by Democrats, four weeks of paid family and medical leave would be granted to full-time and part-time workers in the private and public sectors. The program would be administered by the Social Security Administration and would operate on a sliding income scale according to a formula that Democrats say would allow low-income workers to keep a larger chunk of their paycheck.

Advocacy groups have praised the proposed program, saying it could be transformative for millions of American workers who lack access to paid family leave or sick leave.

Democrats previously wanted to include up to 12 weeks of paid family and medical leave in their huge bill, but it was reduced to four weeks and then removed from the plan entirely after Manchin’s opposition to the measure. House Democrats, however, put it back into the plan in early November following an outcry from supporters.

The party hopes to pass the bill through Congress using a procedure known as budget reconciliation, which will allow them to sidestep a likely GOP obstruction in the Senate on an equal footing. But that means Democrats would need the support of all of their members in the upper house to approve the measure, giving Manchin significant clout in drafting the bill.

Gillibrand, who has had several conversations with Manchin about the party’s paid leave proposal in recent weeks, was seen by his colleagues as the leader of efforts in the upper house to influence the Virginia Democrat- Western.

“He really likes paid vacation. He likes paid time off as an acquired benefit. He likes it as a 12 week program that is universal. He likes it like social insurance and just like social security, he likes this framework, ”she said.

“But what I do know and what I need him to know is that Republicans don’t share that value. In fact, they do not support a universal program and they do not support an earned benefit. And I asked each of them who had ever expressed an interest in paid time off, ”she said.

According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, paid family leave was available to less than a quarter of civilian workers as of March 2021. Data examined by the agency in March 2020 found that 78% of civilian workers had access paid sick leave benefits.

UCLA’s Fielding School of Public Health also confirmed to The Hill on Thursday that the United States is one of 7 countries without national paid maternity leave. The others are the Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, Palau, Papua New Guinea and Tonga.

Other Democratic senators told The Hill they also spoke to Manchin about it.

Senator Jon testerJonathan (Jon) TesterThe Hill’s Morning Report – Brought to you by Uber – Senate busy except Build Back Better Democratic concerns grow over SALT capping policy Senate votes against Biden’s vaccine mandate for companies PLUS (D-Mont.) Said Thursday he had recently met with Manchin to introduce the senator on the bill. Tester said Democrats are still hoping the policy will be included in the package.

“I just told him about the fact that we need it,” Tester told The Hill.

But it’s not clear whether Manchin, who has voiced concerns about the size of overall spending for months, has fully warmed up to the multibillion-dollar proposal.

Pressed by The Hill on the matter last week, Manchin said lawmakers were still in negotiations.

“I spoke to everyone. It’s all I can say. We are still negotiating, ”he said.

Republicans who have backed other paid vacation proposals have expressed interest in working with Manchin on paid vacation legislation. But many disagree with the way the program is modeled in the Democratic bill.

Senator Joni ErnstJoni Kay ErnstThe Hill’s Morning Report – Brought to you by Uber – Senate Debt Limit Drama Ends; Trump’s Legal Problems Rise On The Money – Senate Risks Trump’s Wrath With Debt Ceiling Deal Senate Passes Bill to Avoid Filibuster on Raising Debt Ceiling MORE (R-Iowa) told The Hill on Thursday that she would like to work with Manchin on a measure to address the issue. But she added that the paid vacation structure presented in a 2019 bill she introduced was the “kind of model” she would like to make.

The bill Ernst is referring to proposes what she, along with Sen. Mike leeMichael (Mike) Shumway Chairman LeeKey House wants official trip to Taiwan in January Instagram boss gets grilled by both parties over prejudice to teenagers Senate rejects attempt to block arms sale Saudi women from Biden PLUS (R-UT), billed at the time as a “budget neutral” scheme that parents can join and which would allow parents to receive up to three months of paid leave “giving them the option to defer activation of their social security benefits ”.

Another bipartite parental leave plan introduced the same year by Sens. Kristen Sinema (D-Arizona) and Bill CassidyBill CassidyOvernight Energy & Environment – Brought to you by ExxonMobil – Biden orders end overseas coal funding Transformational legislation set to be bipartisan again White House seeks credit if gas prices fall MORE (R-La.) Would have allowed new parents “to advance $ 5,000 of their child tax credit upon the birth or adoption of a child,” according to Sinema’s office. But, in exchange for the benefit, the bureau said “parents would reduce their annual child tax credit by $ 500 in each of the next 10 years.”

These policies have received mixed reviews from advocacy groups.

“We shouldn’t be forcing people to choose and play between what they might need now and in the future,” said Michelle McGrain, congressional relations director for economic justice at the National Partnership for Women & Families.

“We should be able to do both. So we should have a strong and comprehensive universal family and medical leave program, we should have a strong child tax credit program, and we should not force parents to choose between what they need now and what they think they are. we might need it later, ”she said. said La Colline.

About Christopher Johnson

Check Also

Resources on pronouns at UCCS – Le Scribe

For UCCS students, staff and faculty who have not yet learned the use of pronouns, …