‘Have Plan B ready’: Manchin does not ‘rule out’ third-party presidential bid

Daily Caller News Foundation

Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia said he was “not ruling anything out” with regards to mounting a third-party challenge against President Joe Biden during a “Fox News Sunday” appearance.

“’No Labels’ has been moving and pushing very hard the centrist middle. Making commonsense decisions,” Manchin told Fox News host Shannon Bream, referencing a centrist group seeking to field a unity ticket in the 2024 campaign. “People that basically expect us to do our job. And not put the political party ahead of the policy in our great country. That’s what we’ve seen happening. And there’s more noise and more extremism coming from the far left and the far right.”

“I think with a risk management team, you better have Plan B,” Manchin added later in the interview. “Because if Plan A shows that we’re going to the far reaches of both sides, the far left and the far right, and the people don’t want to go to the far left and the far right, they want to be governed from the middle.”

Manchin currently is up for reelection for the Senate in 2024, but has not announced if he will run for reelection. If he did, he would likely face either Republican Rep. Alex Mooney of West Virginia or Republican Gov. Jim Justice of West Virginia.

“My filing date is Jan. 15 in 2024, and I will make my decision maybe a little bit before that — but not until the end of the year, I can assure you,” Manchin told Chuck Todd during an April  appearance on “Meet the Press.”

Justice leads Manchin in a hypothetical head- to-head matchup by 22 points, according to a poll by East Carolina University, which notes Manchin’s job approval is at 33%, with only 51% of Democrats supporting him. President Donald Trump carried West Virginia by wide margins in the 2016 and 2020 presidential elections.

Manchin, who narrowly won re-election in 2018 against Republican Attorney General Patrick Morrissey, has angered some Democrats with his defense of the filibuster and opposition to some of President Joe Biden’s nominees.

“I’m not saying who it’s going to include or exclude,” Manchin told Bream. “I’m saying you better have Plan B ready.”

“Not ruling anything in, not ruling anything out,” Manchin said.

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