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Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., actually understated the flow of federal money. West Virginia has received $92.4 billion in federal funds from 2020-2023.
That’s about $30 billion higher than during the previous four-year period, and even higher compared with other four-year periods going back to 2008.
Learn more about PolitiFact's fact-checking process and rating system.
In 2024, Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., is up for reelection. If Manchin seeks a new term, he is considered highly vulnerable to a Republican challenge, given his state’s shift toward the Republican Party over the last two decades.
Both Gov. Jim Justice and Rep. Alex Mooney are seeking the Republican nomination to take on Manchin, who is West Virginia’s only statewide-elected Democrat.
Anticipating the election, Manchin is touting his Senate record by reminding voters of his ability to bring home federal dollars.
On Sept. 2, Manchin shared a post on X, formerly Twitter, that recapped statistics on how much federal funding West Virginia has received in recent years.
"Just in the last four years, $80 billion in federal funding has come to West Virginia — $22 billion more than we've ever received," Manchin wrote, singling out $1.5 billion for expanding broadband availability and $3.2 billion for highways. "I was proud to fight for these historic investments in West Virginia's future!"
The numbers Manchin cited are actually a little low.
His office pointed PolitiFact West Virginia to the website USAspending.gov, the federal government’s publicly accessible, digital database for all federal spending.
The site’s West Virginia summary page reports that in the past four years — 2020 to 2023 — the state has received almost $92.4 billion in federal funds. That’s even higher than the $80 billion Manchin mentioned, and it’s easily more than any previous four-year period going back to 2008, when the website’s data starts.
During the previous four-year period, 2016 to 2019, West Virginia received $62.6 billion. That’s almost exactly $30 billion lower than the 2020-23 period..
The particularly high federal spending in 2020 and 2021 is not surprising, given the coronavirus relief bills former President Donald Trump and his successor, Joe Biden, signed during those years.
The amount of spending for West Virginia has declined in 2022 and 2023. But despite this reduction, federal funding for West Virginia has remained above its typical pre-pandemic level.
In general, West Virginia is among the leading states for federal spending per resident.
According to 2021 data calculated by the Rockefeller Institute of Government in Albany, New York, West Virginia received $13,655 in federal funding per capita that year. That figure refers to federal expenditures in the state, minus federal tax payments by residents, divided by the number of state residents.
The institute said only six states had a higher net federal funding rate per capita: Alabama, Alaska, Kentucky, Maryland, New Mexico, and Virginia.
In a separate analysis, WalletHub, a personal finance site, rated West Virginia first of any state in its calculation of residents’ dependence on federal funds, and ninth among states for the state government’s dependence on federal dollars.
Manchin isn’t solely responsible for this gusher of federal funds — West Virginia has been a favored target for federal dollars going back to Manchin’s Senate predecessor, Democrat Robert Byrd — but holding a senior position in the Senate doesn’t hurt.
Manchin said, "Just in the last four years, $80 billion in federal funding has come to West Virginia — $22 billion more than we've ever received."
This understates the flow of federal money. Up-to-the-minute federal data shows that West Virginia has received $92.4 billion in federal funds from 2020 to 2023. That’s about $30 billion more than during the previous four-year period.
Manchin’s understatement keeps this from a perfect rating. We rate it Mostly True.
Joe Manchin, post on X, Sept. 2, 2023
USAspending.gov, West Virginia summary page, accessed Sept. 29, 2023
WalletHub, "2023’s most and least federally dependent states," March 15, 2023
Rockefeller Institute of Government, "Who gives and who gets?" accessed Sept. 29, 2023
Email interview with Logan Van de Water, spokesperson for Joe Manchin, Sept. 18, 2023
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