Scott Walker backs West Virginia attorney general in GOP Senate primary

Scott Walker backs West Virginia attorney general in GOP Senate primary
© Greg Nash

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) on Tuesday endorsed West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey, who is seeking the Republican nomination to challenge Sen. Joe ManchinJoseph (Joe) ManchinManchin touts support for Trump border wall in new ad Dems seek to leverage ObamaCare fight for midterms White House was in talks with Manchin to lead Veterans Affairs: report MORE (D-W.Va.).

Walker, who ran an unsuccessful presidential campaign in 2016, praised Morrisey for his conservative record and for fighting Obama-era coal regulations.

“Patrick has fought for West Virginians while defending the rule of law, and he is ready to keep fighting for them as a champion of conservative reform in Washington, D.C.,” Walker said in a statement. 

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Morrisey said in a statement that Walker’s endorsement “will excite the many conservatives across West Virginia and the nation who have rallied to our campaign.” 

Morrisey is one of multiple Republican candidates campaigning for the GOP nomination to face Manchin in November. 

Rep. Evan JenkinsEvan Hollin JenkinsDem poll: Manchin leads GOP opponent by 12 points Blankenship third-party bid worries Senate GOP Blankenship to run third-party Senate campaign after losing GOP primary MORE (R-W.Va.) and former Massey Energy CEO Don Blankenship are also seeking to be the GOP standard-bearer. The three candidates will square off in a May 8 primary. 

Manchin has become a prime target of the Trump administration as it seeks to pick up Republican seats in this year’s midterms. Vice President Pence launched a series of attacks on Manchin’s voting record during a visit to the state last month.

Manchin responded that Pence’s comments are “why Washington sucks,” and suggested the vice president targeted him because of his bipartisan reputation.

The Cook Political Report, a nonpartisan election handicapper, rates the West Virginia Senate race as a "toss-up."

President TrumpDonald John TrumpEx-ethics chief calls on Trump to end 'monstrous' migrant policies Laura Bush blasts Trump migrant policy as 'cruel' and 'immoral' US denies report of coalition airstrike on Syria MORE won a larger share of the vote in West Virginia than in any other state.