Newly Independent Manchin Declares He Will Not Run For Governor

( — Retiring Senator Joe Manchin last Wednesday dismissed the rumor that he was considering a run for governor in his home state of West Virginia.

Manchin, who last November announced that he was retiring from the Senate when his term ends in January 2025, served as West Virginia governor from 2005 until 2010.

After briefly considering a possible independent run for the White House, Manchin announced in February that he would not run for president in 2024.

While speaking to reporters at an event at the University of Charleston last Wednesday, Manchin reiterated his support for Democratic gubernatorial candidate Steve Williams, describing him as a longtime friend. The senator said that after working with Williams, he knew that the Democratic nominee was competent and would work hard for the people of West Virginia.

It was recently rumored that Manchin was considering a possible run for West Virginia governor, either as an independent third-party candidate or by persuading Steve Williams to step aside.

Some Republicans in the state reportedly encouraged the moderate senator to run for governor after West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey defeated former state Rep. Moore Capito, the son of Republican Senator Shelley Moore Capito, to win the Republican gubernatorial primary last month.

Manchin told reporters that he had no idea how the rumor began but admitted that he appreciated the thought. He said he was humbled and proud that the people of West Virginia believed that his “public service was truly about public service.”

Manchin said that he wanted the state to succeed and would help anyone “do the best they can to represent our state.”

Last Friday, Manchin announced that he had switched his party registration from Democrat to Independent, following in the footsteps of the other “maverick” senator, Arizona’s Krysten Sinema.

The 76-year-old moderate explained that at a time when “our national politics are broken,” and both parties are unwilling to “find common ground,” he had to “stay true to myself” and put the “country before party.”

Manchin said that as an independent, he would “continue to fight for America’s sensible majority.”

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