Democrats are increasingly concerned that moderate West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin is considering a third-party presidential bid in 2020.
The senator, who has yet to formally declare a reelection bid, is reportedly far behind the popular governor in the polls and is being challenged for his seat by the Republican governor, Jim Justice. However, if there is a West Virginia Democrat who could win in the staunchly Republican state, it is he.
The No Labels Party is considering putting together a ticket to compete with the Democratic and Republican tickets, and Manchin’s moderate politics and willingness to work with the other side make him a suitable presidential candidate.
“The danger of a potential Manchin presidential run is twofold for Democrats, in that they cannot afford to have a spoiler siphon votes away from Biden, and they also have no reliable candidate to prevent Manchin’s Senate seat from falling to Republicans,” Fox News reported, adding: “Sen. John Hickenlooper, D-Colo., said he spoke with Manchin about the issue this spring, but received a noncommittal response from the West Virginia senator.”
Hickenlooper said: “I have advised him against it. I think it would be a terrible idea. It would help Donald Trump.”
Sen. Jon Tester (D-Montana) agreed with his Colorado colleague, stating, “It would be bad for the country if Joe didn’t run for the U.S. Senate.”
Manchin could sink the Dems in 2024 https://t.co/5yP9zzVPHZ
— Daily Caller (@DailyCaller) June 21, 2023
In the meantime, Virginia Democrat Sen. Tim Kaine indicated confidence that Manchin would defend his Senate seat against Justice and appealed to Manchin’s pride, implying that he would not give up the fight.
“My gut tells me that that’s not going to happen. And my gut tells me there’s still a really good likelihood that Joe’s gonna run for reelection. And we need him, too,” Kaine said.” If Gov. Justice thinks he’s gonna sweep Joe Manchin aside, I know that Joe Manchin is like, ‘Are you kidding me? No way.’”
In conversations with other Democrats and interviews, Manchin has not ruled out a third-party candidacy.
“Then how did Perot get Bill Clinton elected?” Manchin asked rhetorically in an interview with Politico when he was confronted with the possibility he could become a spoiler.
“Everybody’s getting so worked up and scared to death, and we’re a year and a half away,” he added. “Is there any alternative? Is there anything that we can do to bring both the Democrat and Republican Party back to centrist policy?”
Earlier this month in an interview with “Fox News Sunday” host Shannon Bream, Manchin was once again noncommittal regarding a third-party bid.
More on this story via Conservative Brief:
“Not ruling anything in, not ruling anything out,” Manchin said. CONTINUE READING…