*Reposted from Gotham Gazette. Written by  Ben Brachfeld*

U.S. Rep. Jamaal Bowman says he is optimistic about the incoming mayoral administration, even going so far as to say Eric Adams has the potential to be “one of the best mayors in New York City history,” but he’s less bullish about the state of Build Back Better in Congress, owing to what he describes as donor-driven obstruction by West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin.

Bowman, a freshman legislator who represents the Bronx and Westchester in Congress after defeating longtime incumbent Eliot Engel in a Democratic primary last year, appeared on a recent episode of the Max Politics podcast from Gotham Gazette for a wide-ranging discussion touching upon President Joe Biden’s $2 trillion Build Back Better agenda, Manchin’s obstruction of that social and physical infrastructure package, and his thoughts on the incoming administration of Mayor-elect Adams.

Bowman, a former school principal, is a card-carrying member of the Democratic Socialists of America who has allied himself with fellow Bronx Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and the progressive “squad” they are both part of. Bowman, Ocasio-Cortez, and other members of the squad voted against the president’s bipartisan infrastructure bill that passed Congress and was signed into law earlier this year, arguing they could not support the measure unless it was coupled with the Build Back Better package, lest Manchin (and other moderate and conservative Democrats) be ceded leverage that he wouldn’t have if they were voted on at the same time.

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