Manchin Declines 2024 Run That Threatened Both Biden, Trump

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(Bloomberg) -- West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin announced he is foregoing a 2024 presidential run, after speculation that he would present a centrist alternative to President Joe Biden and Republican frontrunner Donald Trump.

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“I will not be seeking a third-party run. I will not be involved in a presidential run,” Manchin said Friday during a speech in West Virginia. “I am not going to be a deal-breaker, if you will, a spoiler, or whatever you want to call it. I just don’t think it’s the right time.”

“Democracy is at stake right now,” he said.

A conservative Democrat, Manchin was the decisive vote on some of Biden’s most significant legislative accomplishments but blocked many others. The 76-year-old senator flirted with a potential independent presidential bid that threatened to draw independent and third-party voters and could have played a spoiler role if he took more votes from Biden than from Trump, Biden’s likely rival in the general election.

Interest in Manchin and other potential third-party contenders grew with polls showing that many Americans are unenthusiastic about another contest between Biden and Trump.

(Adds Manchin quotes saying he won’t run. An earlier version was corrected to clarify Manchin’s party affiliation.)

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