Senate Democrats’ hopes to hold its narrow majority in the upper chamber likely just got crushed by West Virginia Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin’s Thursday announcement not to seek reelection in 2024.
Manchin’s decision opens the door for Republicans to flip the seat red with West Virginia GOP Gov. Jim Justice expected to win the party’s nomination and no viable Democratic candidate emerging so far. A victory in West Virginia would put the upper chamber’s partisan control at 50-50 if Democrats can hold their seats in several other contentious races, a proposition that appears unlikely.
“You look at three very difficult states in Arizona, Montana, and Ohio and then four pure purple states in Nevada, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. The odds of winning all seven of those are really low but we have to try,” a Democratic senator, granted anonymity to speak candidly on the state of the 2024 election, told The Hill.
If any one of the Democratic-held seats in Montana, Ohio, Arizona, Nevada, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania can be flipped, or the GOP wins the White House, Republicans would gain control of the Senate, Politico reported. Michigan’s outgoing Democratic Sen. Debbie Stabenow’s seat also opens up another opportunity for Republicans to snag a seat.