Joe Manchin Contemplates Leaving The Democratic Party 

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV.) has revealed that he’s carefully considering a significant move that could see him leave the Democratic Party.

In a candid conversation with West Virginia radio host Hoppy Kercheval, Manchin discussed his contemplations amid swirling rumors of a potential third-party presidential run in 2024, an option he hasn’t dismissed. 

When asked about his plans, Manchin shared his concerns about both major parties’ current states and his desire for a better path forward.

“I’m thinking seriously. For me, I have to have peace of mind, basically,” he stated, adding “The brand has become so bad — the ‘D’ brand and ‘R’ brand. In West Virginia, the ‘D’ brand because it’s the national brand. It’s not the Democrats in West Virginia, it’s the Democrats in Washington.”

Manchin emphasized that he’s always been vocal about his distinctive identity within the party. Addressing speculations about his future political affiliation, he maintained a sense of deliberate caution. 

“I haven’t made any decisions whatsoever on any of my political direction. I want to make sure that my voice is truly an independent voice. When I do speak, I want to be able to speak honestly about basically the extremes of the Democrat and Republican Party that’s harming our nation,” he stated.

The journey from steadfast Democrat to contemplating independence has unfolded over the years for Manchin. While he was initially described as a “lifelong Democrat” back in 2010, his stance has evolved considerably. In April 2021, he asserted his commitment to the party, but his trajectory began shifting late in 2021 as he started deviating from the Democratic agenda.

Signs of his growing alignment with independence became evident in December when his colleague, Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), made the bold move of leaving the Democratic Party to become an independent, though still caucusing with Democrats. Manchin’s alignment with moderate politics and reluctance to adhere to the rigid platforms of either party have fueled his consideration of going independent.

Amid these political considerations, Manchin faces a potential presidential election bid. As he is yet to come out with a decision, his considerations reflect a broader sentiment — a desire for politics that reflect the concerns of everyday Americans rather than being trapped within the constraints of party ideology.