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Joe Manchin suggests Mitt Romney, Rob Portman as potential running mates as he flirts with third party ticket

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-N.C.) has said that if a third party were to run for president, he would choose either Sen. Mitt Romney or former Ohio Republican Sen. Rob Portman as his running mate. Ta.

“If I were to pick a running mate…actually, my pick right now would be Mitt Romney,” Manchin said Thursday at a breakfast forum at the Cleveland City Club.

“Maybe Rob Portman will be there, too,” Manchin added. “Rob is a dear friend of mine. What a nice guy he is, what a nice guy.”

Manchin hints at third-party investment after Super Tuesday: ‘People are looking for options’

(Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images | Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images | Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)

City Club CEO Dan Moulthrop moderated the forum, attended by about 150 people, and repeatedly explored whether Mr. Manchin would join the race.

“Listen, folks, I’m not running for anything,” Manchin said. “I basically run to get people involved.”

Mr. Manchin’s comments come as Mr. Manchin has flirted with running for a third-party presidential bid in recent months, and the two-month “listening tour” may be the start of Mr. Manchin throwing himself into the ring. The announcement comes amid heightened speculation. Both Manchin and Romney announced last year that they would not seek re-election to the Senate in 2024.

The West Virginia Democrat positions himself politically as centrist compared to his more progressive colleagues in the Senate, and has repeatedly expressed dissatisfaction with both President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump. I’ve done it.

Last summer, Manchin’s daughter Heather launched a nonprofit called Americans Together, which aims to unite the country’s moderate voters away from the “extremes” of the left and right. If Mr. Manchin announces his candidacy for president, he is likely to use the nonprofit organization to strengthen his campaign.

“We oppose extremism in politics. Extremism has taken over our political system and robbed us of our voices,” the Americans Together campaign website states. “As proud Americans, we agree more than we disagree. We demand that politicians put country over party to get things done. Enough is enough. .”

Manchin says he can “absolutely” consider himself president, thinks Biden’s health or Trump conviction could pave the way

Joe Manchin in the elevator

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-West Virginia) heads to vote in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol on June 8, 2021 in Washington, DC. (Samuel Corum/Getty Images)

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Manchin previously said he would make a decision after Super Tuesday, March 5, when multiple states hold primaries and caucuses at the same time, a crucial day for candidates to win delegates.

“Super Tuesday will pretty much confirm what we believe is going to happen and we’ll see where it goes from there.” Manchin told reporters. New Hampshire primary election day.

FOX News Digital has reached out to Romney and Portman for comment.

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