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Joe Manchin Leaves Democratic Party, Registers as Independent

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) announced on May 31 that he has left the Democratic Party and become an independent.

“My commitment to do everything I can to bring our country together has led me to register as an independent with no party affiliation,” Mr. Manchin wrote in a post on the social media platform X, showing a picture of himself with what appeared to be a voter registration form.

“I have seen both the Democrat and Republican parties leave West Virginia and our country behind for partisan extremism while jeopardizing our democracy. Today, our national politics are broken and neither party is willing to compromise to find common ground.”

Mr. Manchin’s departure from the party does not change Democrat control of the Senate.

He joins Sens. Kyrsten Sinema (I-Ariz.) and Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), both of whom caucus with the Democrats.

Mr. Manchin, who has been in the Senate since November 2010, has been critical of President Joe Biden, particularly regarding his green energy policies, despite voting for the 2022 Inflation Reduction Act, which included aggressive climate change-related measures.

He was key in preventing the Democrats from abolishing the filibuster, which requires 60 votes for most legislation to proceed to a final vote in the Senate.

Mr. Manchin, 76, explored a possible third-party run. However, he said it would be “very challenging” and a “deal-breaker” or “spoiler.”

“The system right now is not set up for [it]. [In] the long game, maybe we can make a third party viable where it has a process and opportunity. Right now, it’s very challenging,” he said.

“And I’m not going to be a deal breaker, if you will, spoiler, whatever you want to call it,” he continued. “I just don’t think it’s the right time.”

He has declined to endorse President Biden’s reelection campaign.

“I’m not endorsing anybody right now. We’re going to see what all happens,” Mr. Manchin told CNN on Feb. 19.

“I’ve had this conversation with him and with his people that he’s gone too far to the left. They’ve pushed him and pulled him, and whatever. But that’s not where America is. That’s not where our country is,” he said.

“I’m hoping the Joe Biden that we saw in 2020 will be the Joe Biden we see in 2024 if that can be done. If not, it’s going to be a long road for everybody,” he added.

Mr. Manchin declined to run for reelection this year and his seat is expected to flip to the GOP with the election of Gov. Jim Justice.

“After months of deliberation and long conversation with my family, I believe in my heart of hearts that I have accomplished what I have set out to do for West Virginia,” he said. “I have made one of the toughest decisions of my life and decided that I will not be running for reelection to the United States Senate.”

Earlier this year, Mr. Manchin passed on a presidential run.

“I will not be seeking a third-party run,” he said in West Virginia. “I will not be involved in a presidential run.”

He added, “I will be involved in making sure that we secure a president that has the knowledge and has the passion and has the ability to bring this country together.”

Mr. Manchin announced in May that he would not run for governor of West Virginia, a position he held between January 2005 and November 2010.

“My support is with Steve Williams,” he said, referring to the Democrats’ nominee who will take on West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey, a Republican, in November.

READ 15 COMMENTS
  • James Leamons says:

    Still a democrat…

  • Wayne says:

    If he thinks Joe Biden was a good candidate in 2020 then he will vote for him in 2024. Joe hasn’t changed. He just got older and senile. Still the same POS that he was in 2020, 2016, 2012, 2008. 1979, do you get it? Joe Manchin is just trying to save his job. Don’t be fooled West Virginia

  • A. Michaels says:

    Too little, too late Manchin. You had the opportunity to really “stick it to Biden’ on the monstrous spending “inflation reduction act”, and you caved. A coward, like every other ‘effin dem on Capital Hill and beyond.

  • Bill says:

    WV does not like how Manchin voted for Democrat bills, his only chance to remain in politics is change parties. But, he is a Uni-party money hungry creature just like most of the Democrat and Republicans. The populace is finally waking up to that fact!

  • Richard S Mundy says:

    He’s not changed, he’s a leopard, the spots are the same.

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