The Senate minority leader praised the Democrat for wanting to keep the filibuster in the upper house.
Without a path forward that bypasses Republicans, it's unlikely Democrats will be able to pass recurring direct payments.
Manchin's proposed change would have a huge impact on how the Biden infrastructure plan is paid for, while largely preserving a tax policy that delivers a windfall to a tiny handful of executives at major corporations.
"There's six or seven other Democrats who feel very strongly about this. We have to be competitive," the West Virginia senator said.
The Vermont senator told MSNBC that "a lot of work" has been already done internally in terms of bringing Democrats together on issues such as the $15 minimum wage.
As the West Virginia senator has called for more bipartisanship on the For the People Act, he does not feel that a more progressive candidate would pose a challenge for him.
Biden has signaled that his position is softening on upholding the Senate rule that requires support from 60 senators to pass most legislation.
Progressives continue to push for $15 an hour, despite their failure to get the raise included in the recently passed American Rescue Plan.
Manchin is in favor of expanding background checks on gun purchases and has touted his own legislation.
The senator reaffirmed that he doesn't support two restrictions on gun purchases that President Joe Biden says could prevent more deadly mass shootings.
Meanwhile, 92 percent of Democrats and 64 percent of independents support an increase in the federal minimum wage.
"There's no way that I would vote to prevent the minority from having input into the process in the Senate," Manchin said.
Republican Governor Jim Justice wants to eliminate personal income taxes in the state over the next few years.
"I think that every Republican wants to raise the minimum wage," said the Democratic senator from West Virginia. "Everyone's just not in sync with Bernie Sanders at $15."
The West Virginia Democrat has spoken of his desires to work in a bipartisan manner, and his own preference for a minimum wage rise but below the $15 an hour mark.
Gov. Jim Justice wants to phase out personal income taxes in the state starting with a 60 percent cut next year.
"I am not going to get on a bill that cuts them out completely before we start trying," Manchin said in a Sunday interview.
"That would be horrible" if Americans thought he enjoyed the power, said the Democratic lawmaker. "I want to make sure people understand. I am in that common-sense middle."
"There's things we can talk about," the West Virginia Democrat said, suggesting modifications could be made to the Senate's contentious legislative rule.
"I did everything I could to bring us together so we'd have more support, and the public would get the needed help, as needed," the Democratic West Virginia Senator said.
The process was stalled for 12 hours when Democrats couldn't agree on an amendment from Senator Bernie Sanders.
The original bill passed by the House offered an additional $400 weekly payment through August, while Republicans proposed a $300 payment through July. A third proposal offered a $300 payments through October.
Manchin is considering two proposals that would lower weekly unemployment benefits. However, the Biden Administration seems willing to accept a compromise
The House previously passed a version of the bill that would raise the weekly unemployment payments to $400.
Manchin received a 'D' rating from the NRA during his 2018 campaign and the gun rights group endorsed his opponent.
"I don't mind looking at increasing the minimum wage in a responsible way," Graham said. "That will be easier for business and get us to where we want to go."
The two Democratic lawmakers have shared opposing views on issues of late, such as the minimum wage and stimulus checks.
Manchin's overall favorability rating sat at negative 11 percent, with a further 47 percent indicating they had no opinion of him.
"We have a responsibility to show people in this country what a Democratic majority can do for working people," the New York progressive said.