CHARLESTON, W.Va. — West Virginia’s U.S. senators were split on a vote Thursday to raise spending limits for two years.
U.S. Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., was among the 67 senators who voted for the Bipartisan Budget Act; Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., and 27 other senators opposed the measure.
House Resolution 3877 increases the spending limits for discretionary spending for the next two fiscal years while also suspending the public debt limit through July 2021.
The House of Representatives passed the measure last week in a 284-149 vote.
Capito praised the Trump administration for negotiating a deal with House leaders.
“One of our most important jobs as members of Congress is delivering the resources to fund our government, provide certainty and support for our military and our veterans, and ensure economic stability for American families,” she said. “This agreement puts us on the path to accomplish all of those goals, and as chair of the Homeland Security Appropriations Subcommittee, I’m ready to get to work and do my part to make sure we do so responsibly, effectively, and with the best interests of West Virginians and all Americans in mind.”
Manchin and three fellow former governors — Republican Sen. Mitt Romney of Utah, Democratic Sen. Tom Carper of Deleware, and Republican Sen. Rick Scott — wrote a joint statement to explain their opposition to the resolution; they noted as governors, they were responsible for setting their respective state’s budgets on an annual basis.
“That’s why today, we, as U.S. senators, cannot bring ourselves to vote for this budget deal that does not put our country on a fiscally sustainable path. We cannot continue to ignore the fact that our country’s $22 trillion national debt is dangerous and unsustainable. We did not run our states this way, and it’s why, now as U.S. senators, we feel strongly that we must lead by example and say that this is not the way to run our country either,” they said.
Romney, who was also the 2012 Republican nominee for president, served as governor of Massachusetts from 2003 to 2007.
Before the vote, President Donald Trump urged Republicans to back the measure.
“Budget Deal is phenomenal for our Great Military, our Vets, and Jobs, Jobs, Jobs!” he tweeted. “Two year deal gets us past the Election. Go for it Republicans, there is always plenty of time to CUT!”
Trump tweeted a similar message to the House before its vote; Reps. David McKinley and Alex Mooney voted against the resolution on July 25, while Rep. Carol Miller voted in favor.