Chuck Schumer Drops Hint Manchin May Run Again in WV Despite Plans to Retire

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer has reportedly proposed the idea of Sen. Joe Manchin making a late entry into the West Virginia Senate race, despite Manchin’s previous plans to retire from the Senate, according to a new report from the Washington Free Beacon. While Manchin acknowledged discussing this possibility with Schumer, he emphasized that it was a highly unlikely scenario, stating, “I don’t know if anything in Washington, D.C., is 100 percent.”

The potential for Manchin to run as an independent candidate is reportedly contingent on Don Blankenship winning the Democratic primary. Blankenship, a controversial businessman with a criminal history related to a deadly coal mine explosion, has upset state party leadership with his bid for the nomination.

Manchin expressed his desire for West Virginia to be “represented properly for someone who has a passion for our state” and indicated that the primary results would provide more clarity on the situation.

However, given the political landscape in West Virginia and Manchin’s vote for the Inflation Reduction Act, it remains doubtful that he would emerge victorious in a hypothetical independent run. Manchin’s support for the legislation, which was seen by many conservatives as a departure from his moderate stance, may have alienated a significant portion of the state’s conservative voter base.

Furthermore, Manchin’s decision to forgo a presidential run and instead focus on his Americans Together group, which aims to promote moderate politics, suggests that he may be more interested in shaping the national political conversation than engaging in a grueling Senate campaign.

The senator’s recent actions and statements indicate that while he remains committed to representing West Virginia’s interests, he is also keenly aware of the challenges he would face in a highly polarized political environment.