And even though the relief bill is now headed to Biden’s desk, Manchin’s ability to flex his political muscles isn’t going away anytime soon. He’s undecided on

’s nomination to lead the Department of Health and Human Services, and the Pentagon is urging him to support Colin Kahl’s nomination to a top policy job.

He’s also in the middle of a fight over what, if anything, Democrats will be able to accomplish while the legislative filibuster remains intact.

“Well, he's been the most outspoken, along with Sen. [Kyrsten] Sinema, on this question. And that's why he gets – you call it grief,” said Sen.

(D-Ill.), asked if Manchin was the obstacle to nixing the filibuster rule.

Manchin, a conservative Democrat from a state Trump easily won in 2016 and 2020, is in many ways part of a dying breed in an increasingly polarized Senate. Republicans view him as one of their best negotiating partners, while progressives view him as out-of-touch to the no-holds-barred style of politics that is increasingly seeping into the Capitol’s clubby atmosphere.

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