MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — From opioids to open borders to President Trump’s pick for the Supreme Court, the race to represent West Virginia in the U.S. Senate turned ugly Thursday night as the two candidates traded vicious attacks on each other’s credibility and made their final pitches to undecided voters in the crucial contest.
Incumbent Democrat Sen. Joe Manchin III and his Republican challenger, West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey, are locked in one of the country’s tightest Senate races, and each went into Thursday’s forum — the only formal debate the two men have participated in — looking to land decisive, final blows.
Mr. Morrisey, who will get a boost when Mr. Trump stumps for him in West Virginia on Friday, tried to cast Mr. Manchin as part of Democrats’ “obstruct, resist, impeach team,” and said he’s another “dishonest Washington liberal” who doesn’t have his state’s best interest at heart. His most pointed attack came as he hit Mr. Manchin over the incumbent’s stance on Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, who narrowly advanced to the high court last month after facing numerous allegations of sexual misconduct.
Mr. Manchin was the only Democrat to back Justice Kavanaugh, but he announced his position only after Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine said she’d vote “yes,” leaving no doubt as to the final outcome.