US Democratic Senator Joe Manchin Will Not Seek Re-Election in 2024 – West Virginia’s Democratic Senator Joe Manchin, known for his controversial stance, has declared his decision not to run for re-election in 2024. Instead, he aims to champion unity in the political center. In July, his association with the centrist No Labels group sparked speculation about a potential third-party presidential bid, causing concern among Democrats who fear it could impact Joe Biden’s chances for another term.
On Thursday afternoon, Manchin put out a statement saying: “After months of deliberation and long conversations with my family, I believe in my heart of hearts that I have accomplished what I set out to do for West Virginia. I have made one of the toughest decisions of my life and decided that I will not be running for re-election to the United States Senate.”
He added: “But what I will be doing is traveling the country and speaking out to see if there is an interest in creating a movement to mobilize the middle and bring Americans together.” No Labels views Manchin as a possible contender for its centrist agenda. Despite its low-profile existence since 2010, the group asserts it won’t present a candidate if their platform lacks support or risks favoring one party.
Nevertheless, it is actively raising funds and working to secure ballot positions nationwide. Even prior to Manchin’s announcement, Republican contenders eagerly vied for the Senate seat, exemplified by GOP Rep. Alex Mooney entering the race shortly after securing his fifth House term in November. The approaching 2024 election posed challenges for Senate Democrats, who must defend 23 seats, including those held by independents, in contrast to the Republicans’ 10 seats.
Manchin, a conservative Democrat from a state won by Donald Trump in 2020, adds complexity as one of only three Democratic senators facing re-election in such a scenario. Throughout the initial two years of President Biden’s term, Manchin, a pivotal yet occasionally challenging figure for his party, wielded influence in the evenly split Senate.
Manchin’s announcement follows closely on the heels of Democrats bolstering their Senate majority to 51-49, achieved by winning a Republican-held seat in Pennsylvania just a year ago. This strategic triumph afforded Democrats the ability to pass bills even with a single vote lost within their caucus, diminishing Manchin’s individual power to impede some of his party’s priorities. Although Sinema’s party switch partially restored Manchin’s influence, she clarified her commitment to remaining within the Democratic caucus.
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Sinema, who also faces re-election in 2024, is yet to disclose her plans. Manchin entered the Senate through a special election in 2010 following Robert C. Byrd’s passing. His subsequent victories in 2012 and 2018, the latter being his most challenging campaign in over three decades of West Virginia politics, secured his position, triumphing over Morrisey by a margin of just over 3 percentage points.