(National Sentinel) Election 2018: Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin knows he is in for a tough race in his very red home state of West Virginia next year, and as such is looking to avoid any controversy.
Appearing on MSNBC‘s “Kasie DC” program on Sunday to discuss his campaign and the immense unpopularity of Clinton in his state, he was asked if he’d like her to join him on the campaign trail.
Manchin made clear that he would not favor that.
“It wouldn’t be wise for Hillary to come to West Virginia. It wouldn’t be a good thing for her or for me,” he said.
The Democrat said that while he is friends with both Bill and Hillary Clinton and has known them for a long time, often working with them on state-related issues, he also explaind why he would not want Hillary now associated with his reelection bid, and why coal miners in his state so dislike her.
“We have a great relationship. It’s just that things that were said it was just very harmful and very hard to justify,” he explained. “She made a big mistake and it was wrong.”
Last year during her second failed bid for president, Clinton said that if she won, “We’re going to put a lot of coal miners and coal companies out of business,” according to Politico. The comments drew immediate backlash from the many coal miners in West Virginia and elsewhere who depend on the industry for their livelihood.
Clinton later claimed what she was was simply a “misstatement,” but voters never forgave her.
In 2008 she dominated the state in the Democratic primary, but she lost it to Sen. Bernie Sanders in 2016 by wide margins. Also, Trump won the state by 40 points.
And over the years, the Republican Party has taken over the state legislature, governorship and many state offices, though for decades West Virginia was a Democratic stronghold.
Gov. Jim Justice, who was elected last year as a Democrat, made the surprise announcement in August that he was switching party affiliations and becoming a Republican, even doing so at a campaign rally alongside Trump.
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