Blankenship blames Trump for loss
“I think if there was any single factor based on the polling at different times, the debates, and all the things I saw, it was probably President Trump’s lack of endorsement — I don’t know what to call it, but ‘Don’t vote for Don’ tweet,” he said. “I don’t know what else it would have been.”
The blame is also in an open letter from Blankenship to Trump. As NBC reported:
In an open letter, Blankenship — a Trump supporter himself — accused the president of spreading "fake news" against him when Trump tweeted that West Virginians should vote for either of Blankenship's opponents days before voters went to the polls.
"Your interference in the West Virginia election displayed a lack of understanding of the likely outcome of the upcoming general election," Blankenship's open letter to Trump read.
Trump calls Blankenship
According to Politico:
President Donald Trump connected by phone on Wednesday with Don Blankenship, the former coal baron and ex-con whose Senate candidacy he helped sink.
Trump and Blankenship spoke briefly, according to three people familiar with the discussion. The conversation was described as straightforward, polite and cordial, with the president calling to exchange pleasantries and offer his congratulations on waging the campaign.
Manchin careful not to criticize Blankenship
From Talking Points Memo:
In a pair of TV interviews following Blankenship’s primary loss to West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey (R), Manchin refused to directly criticize Blankenship for his racially charged attacks against Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) — while favorably comparing him to Morrisey as the true West Virginian (Morrisey moved there from New Jersey a decade ago).
Manchin also wouldn’t directly attack Blankenship for his role in failing to prevent the explosion at the Upper Big Branch Mine that killed 29 people in 2010.
And from the Fox News interview of Manchin:
“There was only one truly conservative Republican West Virginian in the race, and that was Don Blankenship. We have had our differences on many issues. But Don, you cannot question Don’s conservatism and also him being a Republican in West Virginia. He’s the only one,” he said in a shot at Morrisey’s roots.
Mitch McConnell: “Thanks for playing, Don”
Yes, Mitch McConnell took the high road:
As The Hill explains:
The image shows McConnell's face seemingly edited on the body of a character from one of the "Narcos" advertisements. In the image, McConnell is surrounded by a cloud of what appears to be cocaine.
Representatives for the Netflix show responded on the show's official Twitter account, retweeting the Senate leader and commenting: "Low blow, Mitch."
Mitch McConnell cracking wise -- who said Republicans have no sense of humor!