Politifact Rates Verbatim Manchin Quote Threatening Violence 'Mostly True'

Manchin wanted to 'beat the living crap' and stopped himself from 'kicking living crap' out of Republican

Sen. Joe Manchin / Getty Images
November 5, 2018

Politifact reported it was only "mostly true" that Democratic incumbent senator Joe Manchin (W.Va.) said he wanted to "beat the living crap out of" his Republican opponent Patrick Morrisey.

The Washington Free Beacon reported Manchin's remarks at a campaign event in Marmet, W. Va., over the weekend, where the Democrat bragged that "it took every bit of my discipline not to beat the living crap out of" Morrisey during their debate.

The line got applause from a room full of Democrats, and Manchin used it again during his next campaign stop in Logan, W. Va.

During that event, the Democrat said he could barely stop himself from "kicking the living crap" out of Morrisey.

The comments were tweeted by the West Virginia Republican Party. "What did Joe Manchin say about civility?" the Republican group said. "Today, he said he wanted to 'beat the living crap out of' his Republican opponent during their debate."

PolitiFact ruled it was only "mostly true" that Manchin wanted to "beat the living crap" out of Morrisey, since Manchin said "it took every bit of his discipline" not to.

PolitiFact claimed the West Virginia Republican Party "twisted Manchin's words" by quoting Manchin verbatim.

The liberal fact-checking website then justified Manchin's comments because Manchin felt "frustration" during his debate against Morrisey.

"In Marmet, Manchin did express his frustration with Morrisey's attacks in the recent debate—enough frustration to feel an impulse to 'beat the living crap out of' his opponent," PolitiFact reported. "But the tweet leaves out an element of what Manchin said—that 'it took every bit of my discipline' not to do it."

"In other words, by the time he was speaking in Marmet, he had already extinguished that impulse," PolitiFact said.

However, PolitiFact was inclined to report that Manchin's comments about wanting to beat up his Republican opponent "does seem to conflict with a prior pledge in favor of civility."

"In February 2018, Manchin took to the Senate floor to pledge 'an era of bipartisan cooperation and agreement in order to restore civility to the United States Senate and our political discourse,'" the website reported. "Manchin urged his colleagues to join him in co-signing his pledge and 'taking the first step to show the American people that they are here to work towards a better United States.'"

Ultimately, PolitiFact ruled the West Virginia Republican Party tweet was "mostly true" because the tweet "needs clarification."

Manchin used the line multiple times during his closing argument to West Virginia voters. He repeated the line at a separate event during a pig roast in Logan during his next campaign stop.

"I don't know if you had a chance to see the debate we had the other night," Manchin said Saturday evening.

"It took everything I had to keep from kicking the living crap out of him," he said.