Patrick Morrisey won’t challenge Manchin, announces run for West Virginia governor

Opioid Crisis Lawsuits
In this Nov. 1, 2018, file photo, Patrick Morrisey speaks to reporters after a debate in Morgantown, West Virginia. (AP Photo/Raymond Thompson, File)

Patrick Morrisey won’t challenge Manchin, announces run for West Virginia governor

Video Embed

West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey won’t seek a Senate rematch against Joe Manchin after losing to the senator in 2018 by less than 20,000 votes.

The West Virginia attorney general will instead run for chief executive of the state as term-limited Gov. Jim Justice (R-WV) mulls a Manchin challenge of his own in 2024.

MANCHIN’S LOOMING RIVAL JIM JUSTICE NEARS DECISION ON WEST VIRGINIA SENATE RACE

Morrisey, the state’s top law enforcement official since 2013, has since November teased that he would run for Senate or governor. On Tuesday, he put speculation to rest at a press event held in Harpers Ferry.

Morrisey will make three other campaign stops on Tuesday as part of a statewide tour to launch his candidacy.

The announcement helps give shape to the emerging Senate primary field. So far, Rep. Alex Mooney is the only Republican to declare his candidacy, while Justice, considered to be Manchin’s top threat, is expected to announce his 2024 plans in the coming days.

Manchin himself is not expected to declare whether he will run for a third full term until the end of this year.

A new poll released this week by National Public Affairs, a Trump-linked polling firm, shows Justice leading Mooney 55% to 24% in a head-to-head matchup. Justice, perhaps the most popular figure in the state, is actively being courted by Senate GOP leadership.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE FROM THE WASHINGTON EXAMINER

Morrisey, who won a competitive GOP primary in 2018’s Senate race, lost to Manchin in the general election by 3 percentage points. Since then, the state has continued to trend rightward. Former President Donald Trump won there in 2020 by almost 40 points.

Morrisey, like other West Virginia officials, is a vocal defender of the former president, calling his Thursday indictment by a grand jury in New York a “political witch hunt.”

He joins a crowded field of Republicans vying for the governor’s mansion in 2024, including Secretary of State Mac Warner, state Del. Moore Capito, and state Auditor J.B. McCuskey.

© 2023 Washington Examiner

Related articles

Share article

Latest articles