Everyone wants to know what U.S. Senator Joe Manchin is up to. His next big move is massively consequential.
That’s why everyone was surprised to see Joe Manchin make this filing with the Supreme Court.
On Tuesday, West Virginia Democrat Senator Joe Manchin filed an amicus curiae brief in support of the Mountain Valley Pipeline with the Supreme Court, hoping to join project developers in their emergency motion to lift the stay granted this month by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit.
Without providing any reasoning, the 4th Circuit stayed work on the natural gas pipeline earlier this month. The pipeline would have stretched from Manchin’s home state of West Virginia to southern Virginia.
After the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled against the pipeline, developer Equitrans issued a statement indicating it will appeal the decision to the Supreme Court since it would delay the pipeline’s completion until next year.
Manchin submitted an amicus curiae brief expressing his displeasure with the court’s judgment, which he had previously called “unlawful.”
“I was proud to help ensure that the Mountain Valley Pipeline would finally be completed,” Manchin said in a statement after the Fiscal Responsibility Act approved the project’s licenses without additional judicial review.
“But, yet again, this vital energy infrastructure project has been put on hold by the Fourth Circuit despite the new law clearly stating that the Fourth Circuit no longer has this authority.”
The Senate member from West Virginia added: “It’s a shame when members of Congress have to ask the Supreme Court to intervene to maintain the credibility of the laws that we’ve passed and the President has signed.” “I am confident that the Court will uphold our laws and allow construction of MVP to resume,” he added.
The debt ceiling compromise agreed last summer by House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) and President Joe Biden accelerated the building of the Mountain Valley Pipeline, which had been halted for five years by a series of court delays.
Last month, Biden signed a bill that would have required the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to give the green light for the pipeline’s construction before any lawsuits could be filed.
The pipeline’s capacity is estimated to reach 2 billion cubic feet per day once it is fully operational.
Keep in mind that Congress’s decision to impose permitting and other requirements for projects like this, as well as the provision for judicial review of the relevant agency decisions to ensure that Congress’s requirements had been met, is the only reason environmentalist groups have been able to oppose the Mountain Valley Pipeline at all.
The Fourth Circuit is out of its depth trying to rule on whether or not the Mountain Valley Pipeline should be allowed to proceed.
It’s also worth noting that such a move on the part of Joe Manchin may indicate that he has his eyes set on staying in the state of West Virginia.
Manchin recently made comments that indicated that he would be eyeing a 2024 bid as a third-party candidate, which would almost certainly take votes away from Joe Biden and clear the path for the Republican nominee.
He even went so far as to say that if he “gets in the race, I’m going to win.”
That obviously has the Left extremely nervous about Manchin seriously considering running for President.
But with this news abut Manchin going to bat on a hot issue for the locals in West Virginia may mean he’s just going to stay where he’s put. He could run for another Senate term after all.
The only question there would be if he changes his party affiliation, which is also a real possibility that would tick the Congressional Democrat “leaders” like Chuck Schumer off.
Stay tuned to the Federalist Wire.