The Corner

Politics & Policy

BREAKING: West Virginia AG Patrick Morrisey Will Run for Senate in 2018

Today Patrick Morrisey, West Virginia’s state attorney general, will announce that he’s running for U.S. Senate in 2018, hoping to take on Democratic incumbent Joe Manchin. The race, in a state that President Trump won last year with almost 69 percent of the vote, represents one of the Republicans’ best chances for a pickup in next year’s midterm elections.

Morrissey’s decision, which he will announce at 5 p.m. in Harper’s Ferry today, also sets up a high-profile GOP Senate primary battle between Morrisey and Congressman Evan Jenkins. Bo Copley, a laid-off coal miner who told Hillary Clinton during the 2016 campaign that miners “don’t see you as a friend,” has also announced a bid.

Morrisey is fresh off a successful reelection campaign in 2016, winning 52 percent to 42 percent, and his boosters are quick to point out he outperformed the Republican gubernatorial candidate. Over the past five years, Morrisey’s built a reputation as one of the state attorney generals most eager to take on the Obama administration in court. His most consequential victory came in a 5–4 decision at the Supreme Court, delaying enforcement of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan until lower courts reviewed legal challenges to the new regulations. The case was a decisive setback for President Obama’s signature environmental initiative, which used an “aggressive” interpretation of the EPA’s authority under the Clean Air Act in an effort to control greenhouse-gas emissions.

A pro-Morrisey super PAC, The 35th PAC, has already begun laying the groundwork of criticism of Jenkins. In the primary, Morrisey is likely to attack Jenkins as a Democrat who merely changed parties to reflect the changing current of the state’s politics. From 1994 to 2013, Jenkins served in the state legislator as a Democrat, he supported Hillary Clinton for president in 2008 (UPDATE: Jenkins only attended a Hillary Clinton town hall in 2007, and there is no public record of him explicitly supporting Clinton; he says he voted for McCain in 2008; full details can be found here), and he and his campaign committee donated $2,000 to Manchin that year. 

For now, the incumbent Manchin is scoffing at Republicans’ attempt to tie him to more liberal Democrats like Hillary Clinton; he points out that his GOP foe, John Raese, attempted to tie him to Barack Obama in 2010 and 2012. He voted for Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch and most of the Trump cabinet, including Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

But there’s some evidence to support the notion that Manchin has drifted left with his party in recent years. He sponsored background check legislation for gun sales with GOP Sen. Patrick Toomey of Pennsylvania in 2013, meaning Manchin is unlikely to enjoy the endorsement of the NRA like he did in previous elections.

He opposed the so-called “travel ban” of immigration restrictions proposed by the Trump administration and voted against Education Secretary Betsy DeVos. Manchin voted for Obamacare, says he wants to “improve and repair” Obamacare, and has not yet seen a GOP plan he willing to support.

Most Popular

PC Culture

Hate-Crime Hoaxes Reflect America’s Sickness

On January 29, tabloid news site TMZ broke the shocking story that Jussie Smollett, a gay black entertainer and progressive activist, had been viciously attacked in Chicago. Two racist white men had fractured his rib, poured bleach on him, and tied a noose around his neck. As they were leaving, they shouted ... Read More
Politics & Policy

The Strange Paradoxes of Our Age

Modern prophets often say one thing and do another. Worse, they often advocate in the abstract as a way of justifying their doing the opposite in the concrete. The result is that contemporary culture abounds with the inexplicable — mostly because modern progressivism makes all sorts of race, class, and ... Read More

Ilhan Omar’s Big Lie

In a viral exchange at a congressional hearing last week, the new congresswoman from Minnesota, Ilhan Omar, who is quickly establishing herself as the most reprehensible member of the House Democratic freshman class despite stiff competition, launched into Elliott Abrams. She accused the former Reagan official ... Read More
PC Culture

Fake Newspeople

This week, the story of the Jussie Smollett hoax gripped the national media. The story, for those who missed it, went something like this: The Empire actor, who is both black and gay, stated that on a freezing January night in Chicago, in the middle of the polar vortex, he went to a local Subway store to buy a ... Read More

White Progressives Are Polarizing America

To understand how far left (and how quickly) the Democratic party has moved, let’s cycle back a very short 20 years. If 1998 Bill Clinton ran in the Democratic primary today, he’d be instantaneously labeled a far-right bigot. His support for the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, the Defense of Marriage Act, ... Read More

One Last Grift for Bernie Sanders

Bernie Sanders, the antique Brooklyn socialist who represents Vermont in the Senate, is not quite ready to retire to his lakeside dacha and so once again is running for the presidential nomination of a party to which he does not belong with an agenda about which he cannot be quite entirely ... Read More
PC Culture

Merciless Sympathy

Jussie Smollett’s phony hate-crime story could have been taken apart in 24 hours, except for one thing: Nobody wanted to be the first to call bullsh**. Who will bell the cat? Not the police, and I don’t blame them. Smollett is a vocal critic of President Donald Trump who checks two protected-category ... Read More