Manchin May Be Just The Man The Republicans Need To Run For President

West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin (D) stirred up further gossip about a prospective third-party presidential run Sunday morning when he made comments to radio talk show host John Catsimatidis on WABC 770 AM in New York.

It has been speculated that the No Labels organization, which is advocating for a “unity ticket” for 2024 with one candidate from each party for the presidential and vice presidential slots, may finance Manchin’s bid.

He recently headlined an event with former GOP governor and presidential candidate Jon Huntsman (Utah), which many perceived as a potential preview of the group’s presidential ticket.

During his appearance alongside Joe Lieberman (D-Conn.), founding chairman of No Labels, Manchin refused to dismiss the suggestion of a No Labels ticket, claiming: “All they’re asking for is ‘Do the citizens of the United States want some other options?’”

He went on to explain that it was not the intention of America’s founding fathers for Democrats and Republicans “to villainize” each other; instead they intended them to work together “for the good of the country.”

President Joe Biden holds low job approval ratings according to most polls while former President Trump is favored by many in Republican primary polls.

However, even in 2016 when both candidates had unfavorable ratings going into election season, third parties failed to make significant progress with libertarians Gary Johnson and Bill Weld only obtaining 3.28% of popular votes.

It remains unclear if Manchin and Huntsman would be able to win more support than this or who their votes would come at the expense of.

According to The Blaze:

Manchin, for his part, refused to downplay the suggestion of a No Labels ticket, saying, “All they’re asking for is ‘Do the citizens of the United States want some other options?’”

Manchin expounded on his thoughts in favor of No Labels by adding, “If you’re a Democrat, they expect you to villainize every Republican. And if you’re a Republican, you should villainize the Democrats. That’s not the way our founding fathers intended for this democracy to work. It was intended for us to work together.”

On the surface, there would seem to be an opportunity for a third party bid to make unusually large inroads with the American electorate. President Joe Biden, who is almost certain to secure the Democratic nomination for president, currently has very low job approval ratings in most polls. Meanwhile former President Donald Trump, who currently enjoys a hefty lead in the Republican primary polls, is likewise viewed unfavorably by a roughly similar margin among the general public.

However, even in 2016, when both Trump and Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton enjoyed low favorability ratings heading into the presidential election contests, third parties struggled to gain a meaningful foothold, with libertarians Gary Johnson and Bill Weld topping the field of would-be third-party candidates at a paltry 3.28% of the popular vote. It is unclear whether a hypothetical ticket consisting of Manchin and Huntsman would be able to gain more traction, and if so, which candidate they would be more likely to siphon votes from in the general.

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