A gaggle of far-left environmental activists followed Sen. Joe Manchin from his DC houseboat to his car Thursday morning and attempted to prevent him from leaving a parking garage — the latest fit of progressive pique over Manchin’s current opposition to the multitrillion-dollar Democratic social spending bill.
Video tweeted by John Paul Mejia, a spokesperson for the Sunrise Movement, showed Manchin (D-WV) walking from his houseboat on the Potomac River — where the senator rests his head when not in his home state — to the garage.
As he strolled, Manchin was serenaded by chants of “We want to live!” while individual activists yelled at him to “Fight for us!”
A second video, posted by Twitter user @Tim_Tweeted, showed small groups of activists standing in front of and behind the silver Maserati. Eventually, security guards who had accompanied Manchin to the car cleared a path for the senator to drive away.
Manchin and his Senate colleague, Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.), have been targets of persistent harassment over their objections to the $1.75 trillion Build Back Better Act, which provides funding for programs meant to counter climate change as well as a dramatic expansion of the social safety net.
In late September, activists on kayaks padded up to Manchin’s houseboat to encourage him to support the legislation. Days later, Sinema was harangued while attempting to give a lecture at Arizona State University and was followed into a women’s bathroom by pro-immigration demonstrators who encouraged her to support a pathway to citizenship for illegal aliens in the legislation.
Manchin’s office did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the incident.
When asked by The Post whether Manchin, Sinema or members of their staff had experienced an uptick in threats to their safety during the debate over the legislation, US Capitol Police responded: “We cannot discuss potential threats or potential security plans.”
While some left-wingers cheered the stunt on Twitter (“Manchin deserves to be peacefully but loudly hounded wherever he goes,” one user wrote), others condemned the protesters’ actions.
“It is *literally* violence to block someone’s lawful, free movement,” tweeted Ellen Carmichael, head of PR firm the Lafayette Company. “They should all be arrested.”
“Weird that blocking someone from driving to work, screaming at them, and then pretending he was running you over didn’t make him empathize with you!” added Maggie Howell, a staffer for House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.).
“Because the most effective way to protest carbon is to force a senator to idle and release more carbon into the air,” cracked Jorge Bonilla, director of the conservative MRC Latino media watchdog group.
Manchin appeared to be behind the wheel of a Maserati Levante crossover vehicle, which reaches top speeds of 156 mph and can go from 0 to 60 in approximately six seconds.