Manchin Mans Up

| Tue Jul. 20, 2010 1:38 PM EDT

West Virginia Gov. Joe Manchin, the most popular politician (and Democrat) in the state, is running for Senate, he announced Tuesday. He hopes to replace the late Sen. Robert Byrd. Manchin is popular enough that he has a decent shot at winning the seat, even in a Republican year. West Virginia Republicans were able to add a provision to the special election law that would allow current officeholders—like Rep. Shelly Moore-Capito, the GOP's top candidate—to run for their current office and the Senate seat simultaneously. Capito is the most prominent Republican in West Virginia, but even she trails Manchin in the polls—by fourteen points, according to Republican-leaning Rasmussen

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