But it does raise questions about his chances in 2018.
First the news: Zito confirmed that Manchin is running for re-election. That should be a cakewalk as it has been 60 years since a seated senator lost a re-election bid in West Virginia.
Zito asked about switching parties. Manchin said no. Here are the five reasons I believe him:
1. He's a loyal Democrat.Manchin is one of 25 Democratic senators seeking re-election. Eight Republicans are. The Cook Report said none of the races are tossups yet. West Virginia is one of 10 states that Trump carried that have a Democratic senator. However, this is a mid-term election. I am inclined to agree with Cook except to point out that:
2. He could not win a Republican primary.
3. He's a loyal Democrat.
4. Mid-term elections favor the opposition party.
5. He's a loyal Democrat.
Democrat Sherrod Brown of Ohio faces a Republican Party that has served the state well under John Kasich. If Kasich is interested in the job, it is his. Otherwise, the state is a toss-up today.
Three leans Democrat states -- Florida, Indiana, and Missouri -- look ripe for the picking for Republicans. It comes down to candidate recruitment. Until then, they lean Democrat.
Republican Jeff Flake deserves to be primaried. For now. We shall see how big a pain he is. At any rate, looks like a tossup as does Nevada where a Republican seeks re-election in a Hillary state.Which leads to Manchin. By all measures, he should be a shoo-in.
Except for the EpiPens. His daughter is the CEO of the company that makes them. And she got a fake degree from WVU to secure that job thanks to her father's connections when he was governor.
How will this play out in 2018? I do not know, but this is a bigger vulnerability than any stands on policies. I would say his seat is safe for Democrats right now, but Republicans might want to test EpiPens as an issue.