A new campaign to stiffen West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin’s pushback of President Joe Biden’s massive spending scheme is targeting parents with children in faith-based schools, warning that they will be driven out under the “Build Back Better” plan.

The influential and new conservative group Common Sense Leadership Fund has unleashed a digital campaign that micro-targets parents and others linked to 18 private schools in West Virginia that provide child care and pre-K education that would be jeopardized by Biden’s plan.

Manchin has already raised questions about the $1.75 trillion price tag of the scheme and suggested that Congress pause passage until it’s clearer it won’t boost inflation already crushing his constituents.

The digital campaign suggests that BBB would kill pre-K and child care at faith-based schools because it could violate federal nondiscrimination policies. As a result, parents would be forced to put their young children in state and county-run institutions.

Such a move could have the impact of expanding growing national concern that Democrats are taking control of schools and pushing parents out.


“Remember ‘If you like your healthcare you can keep it?’ Well the Democrats are up to their old tricks again. And this time they’re after your child care,” reads one digital ad that includes photos of Manchin and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

CSLF President Kevin McLaughlin told us, “Joe Biden’s spending boondoggle is the liberals’ latest weapon of mass destruction in their decades long war on religion. Millions of Americans rely on religious institutions for their child care and pre-K. Joe Manchin claims to stand up for West Virginia families, but talk is cheap. It’s time for Sen. Manchin to take action. This cutting-edge digital campaign directly informs families in Manchin’s home state exactly who is taking away their faith-based childcare providers and forcing them into government-run child care.”

The group is well funded and has used earlier campaigns to target Democrats in competitive 2022 races. The Manchin campaign was described as being a “six-figure” effort.

Here’s what CSLF told us this morning about their advertising campaign:

  • First, we are geofencing the 18 private schools in West Virginia that provide child care and pre-K with Facebook ads.
  • Second, there are Google display ads driving people back to this site: https://cslfund.org/manchin-stand-for-children/
  • There will also be some peer-to-peer texting — here’s a verbatim example: ‘Your child is on the front lines of the radical liberals’ war on religion. Tell Joe Manchin West Virginia families don’t want to live in a secular, Godless nation.’

The effort builds off concerns first raised by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. He said in a floor speech last month that the Biden Build Back Better bill would hurt faith school programs.

"The story is like the Democrats' long march toward socialized medicine," McConnell said: "Take an intimate area of American life, pile on a maze of new mandates, regulations, cost increases, and subsidies, and push families out of the driver's seat so Washington can run their lives."

The new campaign urges parents to sign a petition to Manchin in an effort to win his support to further question the spending plan.

“As written, Democrats’ massive, reckless, multi-trillion-dollar spending bill will shut down faith-based childcare providers and force millions of families into government-run child care and preschool,” said the group’s website dedicated to the new campaign. “If you like your church pre-school, will you be able to keep it? Not if Senator Joe Manchin votes for Joe Biden’s radical bill!” it added.