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Sen. Joe Manchin said on Thursday that he never considered leaving the Democratic Party as a tactic in talks about his party. spending plan, As Mother Jones reported this week, but instead he discussed becoming an independent to avoid embarrassing other Democrats.

“The only thing that was ever said that we’ve ever talked about is an embarrassment to myself, my Democratic colleagues, my caucus, the Democratic leader of the President’s Democrat Party, Chuck Schumer, and all of them.” said in response to a question from Granthshala News. “I said I’m a moderate centrist Democrat, if that causes you a problem, let me know and I’ll be an independent, but I’m still working with the Democrats.”

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Manchin continued: “That’s the only thing that was discussed, nobody accepted it, and I just said, ‘If you need it, I’ll offer it.'”

If Manchin’s comments are true, they cast cold water on the idea that Democrats have ever been in trouble of losing control of the Senate due to Manchin defection. Even if the senator changed his party affiliation to independent, if he continued to caucus with the Democrats, he would retain his de facto majority of 50 members and Vice President Kamala Harris.

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‘Manchinations’ the center of attention on Capitol Hill

Censors Angus King, I-Men, and Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., both independents who caucus with Democrats.

Manchin’s comments also contradict Mother Jones’ initial reporting that the senator had a two-stage plan to leave the party. Trying to pass.

Mother Jones reported that Munchkin would resign his Senate Democratic leadership, and would leave the party if he did not make loose concessions from his allies. The Mother Jones story said it was unclear whether Munchkin would negotiate with Republicans or Democrats in that matter.

Mother Jones reporter David Korn, who wrote the initial story about the senator considering bolting the party, stuck to his story Thursday following the senator’s comments.

“Today [Manchin] Yes—but came out with a cover story,” Korn tweeted. “But his latest spin isn’t true either.”

Senators have switched parties while in office in the past. Most recently, former Sen. Arlene Spector of Pennsylvania switched from a Republican to a Democrat in 2009. Former Connecticut Senator Joe Lieberman changed his party from Democrats to independents in 2006. And the current Sen. Richard Shelby of Alabama changed his party from Democrats. Republicans in 1994.

But perhaps the most impressive change in party affiliation was former Vermont Sen. Jim Jeffords, who changed his party from Republican to independent in 2001. He also began to align with the Democrats.

At the time, the Senate was split 50-50 with the GOP in the majority, thanks to former Vice President Dick Cheney. Therefore, the switch to Jeffords changed the party controlling the Senate. If Manchin made a similar switch, the GOP would gain control of the Senate.

But Manchin said he was not considering it and only offered to leave the Democratic Party if President Biden or Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D.N.Y., thought it would be best for him to do so.