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Biden, Capito Throw Support Behind Manchin Permitting Bill

Biden speaks to supporters early Wednesday in Wilmington, Del., with his wife, Jill Biden.

The White House on Thursday threw its support behind U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin’s, D-WV, permitting bill. The effort has another key endorsement.

After months of pushing the issue on her own, U.S. Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., said she supports Manchin’s permitting bill.

The legislation would ease the way for fossil fuel infrastructure, as well as the transmission lines that support renewable power.

“I support Senator Manchin’s permitting reform proposal as a way to cut Americans’ energy bills, promote U.S. energy security, and boost our ability to get energy projects built and connected to the grid,” President Joe Biden said in in a statement Thursday.

Both senators want it to expedite permitting approvals for the Mountain Valley Pipeline, a natural gas pipeline that’s currently tied up in court.

“I’m going to be voting for it,” Capito said, speaking to reporters in West Virginia. “We’ll see what the numbers bear out, but it looks like early reports are that it will not make it across the finish line. But I hope that it does, because I want that pipeline.”

Capito noted that the bill doesn’t go far enough for many Republicans. Some Democrats oppose it, too, precisely because it fast-tracks fossil fuel projects.

Biden and top congressional leaders had promised Manchin they’d support a permitting bill in exchange for his vote on the Inflation Reduction Act over the summer.