Manchin: Biden ‘should have a lot of regrets’ about classified files, ‘has been pulled’ too far left

Manchin says Biden ‘should have a lot of regrets’ about classified files debacle: Democrat Senator also complains President ‘has been pulled’ too far left – and WON’T say if he’ll support Joe in 2024

  • West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin blasted President Joe Biden’s handling of classified documents as ‘irresponsible’ after more files were found
  • Manchin would not say whether he’ll run as a Democrat himself in 2024
  • Asked if he’d back Biden if he runs, Manchin said he’d need to see ‘lay of the land’

West Virginia Democrat Sen. Joe Manchin tore into President Joe Biden on Sunday over his handling of classified documents, one day after it was announced that yet another batch of such records were recovered from his Wilmington home.

Directly responding to Biden claiming last week that he has ‘no regrets’ on the matter, Manchin said: ‘Oh, I think he should have a lot of regrets.’ 

He was noncommittal about the prospect of Biden’s likely re-election campaign – claiming the president ‘has been pulled to the left’ rather than government in the middle. 

‘How has this happened?’ the conservative Democrat said on NBC News’ Meet The Press as more questions rise about Biden’s handling of secret files.

West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin said President Joe Biden should have 'regrets' over his handling of classified documents

West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin said President Joe Biden should have ‘regrets’ over his handling of classified documents 

He described his own experience viewing classified materials in their secure facilities, after which Manchin said he’d be asked if he was ‘clean’ each time upon leaving. 

‘They want to make sure you’re not carrying anything out. You know, and it might be a mistake, you might just put it in your other papers, but you double check it right there,’ Manchin said.

‘So that- to be held accountable and responsible is what we all are. And to put those in unsecured spaces is irresponsible.’

That notion is supported by a majority of Americans, a new ABC News/Ipsos poll suggests, which shows 64 percent of voters think Biden handled the files ‘inappropriately.’

It’s too early to tell whether the developing debacle will have any real effect on Biden’s likely 2024 campaign. A recent report in The Hill suggests that the president is still moving full steam ahead with launching his re-election bid this year, despite the drama.

Biden has been forced to grapple with crisis after crisis as more classified documents are found and reported among his possessions

Biden has been forced to grapple with crisis after crisis as more classified documents are found and reported among his possessions

But Manchin demurred on Sunday when asked whether he wanted Biden to run again.

‘He’ll have to make that decision,’ the West Virginia senator answered, adding that it was a ‘personal’ choice for the 79-year-old president.

Pressed again on if he’d support Biden if that decision was to run, Manchin said, ‘I haven’t decided on anything I’m going to do until I see what the lay of the land is going to be at that time, because this country needs to unite.’

‘We need to come back together. We’re not coming together. And it needs to be somebody that can bring this country together,’ the centrist senator added.

He did go out of his way to praise Biden, conceding that the leader of his party had ‘done a good job in so many factions.’

‘I think there’s a lot more to be done,’ Manchin said.

Pictures of the entrance to President Joe Biden's lake front home in Wilmington, DE

Pictures of the entrance to President Joe Biden’s lake front home in Wilmington, DE

‘I think he’s been pulled to the left too far, and I think I’ve told him that. I’ve been upfront with that.’

He called for both sides of the aisle to ‘work out of the center,’ even as lawmakers returns to regular legislative sessions on Monday facing a starkly divided Congress.

‘Republican ideas aren’t always bad. And the Democrats don’t have- don’t have all the answers,’ Manchin said. ‘And vice versa.’

The 75-year-old West Virginia Democrat is up for re-election next year, when he’s expected to face stiff competition to keep his seat in the deep red state. 

But he dodged a question on whether he’d even run on the left.

‘I haven’t made a decision what I’m going to do in 2024. I’ve got two years ahead of me now to do the best I can for the state and for my country,’ Manchin said when asked if he’d run as a Democrat.

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