Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin (WV) is throwing support behind the reelection bid of Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski (AK) whose seat former President Donald Trump has threatened with a challenger he endorsed.
Manchin told Politico in a joint podcast interview that he would support Murkowski’s reelection campaign in 2022 “in a heartbeat.”
The support comes after the former president recently vowed to solicit a challenger for Murkowski’s seat after the Alaska Republican voted in February to convict Trump of inciting an insurrection on the US Capitol.
“I’ve met a lot of good people in Alaska, they know when they’ve got the real deal. And they see the person that basically is bringing both sides together, trying to look for the best interest,” Manchin said of Murkowski during the interview. “People understand that they have a person that understands Alaska and has Alaska in her blood and in every part of her veins and every morsel of her body.”
Trump has backed Kelly Tshibaka against Murkowski next year and Manchin is familiar with the wrath of Trump-inspired challenges after facing one of his own three years ago.
Manchin has also endorsed Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) in her 2020 reelection race.
“I don’t think we should be campaigning against any colleagues, Democrat or Republican,” he said.
Murkowski hasn’t officially launched her reelection campaign but was pleased to have the West Virginia Democrat’s support.
“I would welcome his endorsement,” she said.