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MCConnell Urged Trump to Reject West Virginia Candidate

MCConnell Urged Trump to Reject West Virginia Candidate

In a last-ditch effort to suppress Blankenship, Trump on Monday urged voters to reject the former coal executive and instead vote for either Jenkins or Morrisey on Tuesday.

"We all really like President Trump's policies but we know that he doesn't get things right", Blankenship said in a paid program on a community-access television station in West Virginia.

If there's one person who has run the most Donald Trump-esque campaign since the 2016 election, it's probably Don Blankenship. "Remember Alabama", the president said.

Retiring Arizona Republican Sen. Joe Manchin in November.

"It was a fake prosecution", Blankenship said during a Fox News debate last week. He said Trump is getting "bad information" and said his accusers are big Democrats - not young women, a reference to Moore's accusers.

He's confronted a set of attacks from institution Republicans for his part at the tragedy.

"We have a three-alarm fire in West Virginia", Republican strategist Ford O'Connell told Newsweek. Joe Manchin has long displayed a talent for connecting with that constituency (or, more precisely, enough of that constituency to command a state-level majority).

Blankenship is running a scorched-earth campaign, attacking Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky.

This article has been updated to include statements from Don Blankenship and Rep. Evan Jenkins.

Mr. Jenkins also claimed that he'd been endorsed by the president.

"The president is a very busy man and he doesn't know me and he doesn't know how flawed my two main opponents are in this primary".

To be sure, Republicans don't want an Alabama Senate race redux. "The President hasn't been involved in this race, but we are looking forward to him endorsing us after we win the primary".

The president had offered Moore his full-throated support in the days leading to the special election in the deep red Cotton State.

Many pundits said the race could determine which party controls the Senate next year.

Early in the midterm election cycle, Republicans had hoped that winning Manchin's seat would increase their slim Senate majority. Democrats would have to pick up two seats in the U.S. Senate and 23 seats in the House of Representatives in November to take over. He has consistently voted against Senate Republicans' ObamaCare repeal or replace efforts and most recently their tax-cut bill that Trump signed in late-December 2017.

Two weeks ago Blankenship was trailing both candidates.

Blankenship was the CEO of Massey Energy when a coal mine exploded and killed 29 coal miners in 2010. The establishment is misinforming Trump, Blankenship told NBC Monday.

Despite his past, the 68-year-old Blankenship and his anti-establishment message appear to be resonating with voters, in a state with a 5.4 percent jobless rate, the third-highest in the country. He followed the comments with an ad saying: "Swamp captain Mitch McConnell has created millions of jobs for China people".

McConnell's wife is Trump's transportation secretary, Elaine Chao, who was born in Taiwan.

Much to the chagrin of McConnell and Trump, Blankenship's extreme behavior has appealed to far-right primary voters but will likely serve as a disadvantage when the time comes to move toward the middle in the general election.