Morrisey Says He's Within Margin of Error in Race Against Manchin

Trump Jr. rallies for Republican in West Virginia

Patrick Morrisey
Patrick Morrisey / Getty Images
October 22, 2018

INWOOD, W.Va.—Patrick Morrisey said he is within the margin of error in his race to defeat incumbent Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin in West Virginia.

Hundreds of residents of West Virginia's eastern panhandle adorned in Make America Great Again hats gathered to attend a midday rally on Monday for Morrisey, headlined by the president's son Donald Trump, Jr. The attorney general and Republicans in the crowd at Heritage Hall spoke optimistically about their chances on Election Day.

"The Democrats are excited and think the energy is on their side. I say no, the energy is in this room," said Charles Trump, a local senator in the West Virginia legislature who kicked off the rally by quipping the crowd was disappointed when they heard the name "Trump" and he came out.

Morrisey is currently polling 12 points behind Manchin, according to the Real Clear Politics average. However, the Republican candidate suggested his internal polls are higher.

"It's great to be back home in the eastern panhandle, this is how we're going to win this election," said Morrisey, who praised the Trump administration accomplishments on appointing judges and cutting taxes.

Morrisey closely aligned himself with the president, who won West Virginia by 42 points in 2016. He praised Trump's willingness to "take on the liberal establishment, the 'fake news,' and the political elite."

Morrisey tied Manchin to the "obstruct, resist, and impeach circus that we saw just a few weeks ago," invoking the confirmation process of Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh. Several attendees of the rally told the Washington Free Beacon they felt energized after the Kavanaugh affair.

Morrisey also painted Manchin as a Washington flip-flopper. "Joe Manchin was against the wall, now he claims he's for the wall," he said. "I think he just likes to ride the fence."

"With a little over two weeks left in this election, we've got all the momentum," Morrisey said. "We've taken our polling numbers from 12, to 10, to 8, to 6, to 4, to right in the margin of error."

Trump Jr. received top billing at the event. His girlfriend Kimberly Guilfoyle, the former Fox News host who now serves as vice chairwoman of the America First Action pro-Trump PAC, also spoke.

The biggest applause lines came during calls to build a border wall between the United States and Mexico. The biggest jeers came at the mention of Democratic leaders Chuck Schumer, Nancy Pelosi, and Maxine Waters.

The crowd erupted in a chant of "Lock her up" at the mention of Hillary Clinton bragging about her plans to "put a lot of coal miners and coal companies out of business" during the 2016 campaign.

Trump Jr.'s message was a vote for Morrisey is a vote for "results over resistance." He touted his father's record, including cutting 22 regulations for every new one put in place, moving the Israeli Embassy to Jerusalem, and enforcing "red lines."

"Our former president, remember he drew a red line in Syria?" he asked the crowd. "They walked across the red line, they slapped them in the face. [Obama] said, 'Oh sorry, I'll draw another red line.' And they do it again."

"Well, we drew a red line, they tried to walk across it we sent 57 tomahawk missiles and it hit 57 targets," Trump Jr. said. "And what does that mean? It means we got our guts back."

Trump Jr. derided Manchin as not "man enough" to stand up to Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D., N.Y.), referencing a moment during the State of the Union address when Manchin started to stand up to applaud low employment numbers, but sat down when he noticed Schumer looking at him.

Trump Jr. concluded by urging his father's base to come out on Nov. 6, because "we can't be fat and happy and take winning for granted."

"We need people to turn out," he said. "Donald Trump is on the ticket in two weeks. Make no bones about it. If you're going to vote for him in 2020, get out and vote for him in two weeks."

Larry V. Faircloth, a Republican who served 24 years in West Virginia's House of Delegates, said Morissey can topple an incumbent by turning out conservative Democrats and Republicans in the deep red state.

"They're concerned that when the election is over, Manchin is going to go back and partner with Chuck Schumer to make sure that the get a Democrat president in two years," Faircloth said. "He's not going to stay true to Trump."

Yeunshin Kim, an immigrant who came to New York in 1981, is a Trump supporter who said she is angry about illegal immigration, and attacks on the First and Second Amendment.

"I was not born in this country. I was born in South Korea," she said. "I grew up there. I know how important freedom [is]. In North Korea right now, when you criticize the government, you go straight to jail. It's a poor country. There is no freedom. I know."

"Liberal people want America the bottom of the floor," Kim said. "They want to get rid of the First Amendment, Second Amendment. They keep pushing."

When asked why she supports President Trump, Kim said because he "puts America first."

"He loves military people, he loves policemen," she said. "Trump [is] fighting for America. I love that."