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NRA backs Manchin challenger Morrisey in W.Va. Senate race

The National Rifle Association (NRA) has endorsed West Virginia Senate GOP nominee Patrick Morrisey (R) in his bid to unseat Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) in the November midterm elections.

In a Monday announcement, the organization said it backed Morrisey, who is currently West Virginia's attorney general, and trusts him "to defend our constitutional rights."

"Unlike Joe Manchin, Morrisey will stand strong against the Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer anti-gun agenda," Chris Cox, chairman of the NRA's Political Victory Fund, said in a statement.

The NRA had previously endorsed Manchin in his 2012 Senate bid, but are now criticizing the senator for "working with Washington liberals like Pelosi and Schumer."

 

Morrisey accepted the NRA endorsement and stressed his pro-gun record in opposition to Manchin.

"West Virginians hold dear our right to protect ourselves and our families, so I'm proud to have fought to protect Second Amendment rights and I'm honored to have earned the NRA's endorsement," he said in a statement.

"Lying liberal Joe Manchin has disrespected West Virginia gun owners by standing with anti-gun liberals like Obama and Schumer in efforts to undermine the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding citizens."

While the NRA's endorsement came Tuesday, the group has spent thousands supporting his general election campaign, according to ProPublica.

The endorsement came the same day that Manchin released a viral ad showing himself using a rifle to shoot an anti-Obamacare lawsuit backed by Morrisey.

The NRA launched an ad campaign earlier this month explaining that Manchin's new "D" rating from the group is based off of his support for criminalizing private firearm transfers between family members.

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