CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Incumbent U.S. Senator Joe Manchin has won the Democratic primary, The Associated Press and others reported early on Election Night.

With more than half of West Virginia’s precincts reporting, Manchin had 69 percent of the vote.

Manchin racked up endorsements from groups like the United Mine Workers while taking on challenger Paula Jean Swearengin, a progressive and a coal miner’s daughter.

Swearengin had about 31 percent of the vote.

Manchin succeeded the late Robert Byrd in a special election in 2010. He was re-elected in 2012.

Prior to his election to the U.S. Senate, Manchin served as the governor of West Virginia and as the West Virginia Secretary of State.

The general election this fall is considered to be a tossup or leaning Democrat by some of the country’s most prominent political prognosticators.

After the most recent filing period, the Federal Elections Commission reported that Manchin had $5,355,054.00 cash on hand. Manchin had already spent $2,675,180.00.

The race for the Republican nomination has been heated, generating national attention. Of the six candidates, the front runners were Congressman Evan Jenkins, Attorney General Patrick Morrisey and ex-coal executive Don Blankenship.

The Republican primary brought in millions of dollars in spending by political action committees, including some with national party connections.

President Donald Trump, a Republican, is very popular in West Virginia.

Manchin, speaking tonight on MetroNews, said he would like to help the president succeed.

“I want to work with him, and he knows that,” Manchin said. “But I have to be an honest broker too if I think things can be better.”

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