Jan 24, 2023 - Politics & Policy

First look: NRSC blitz pressures "Maserati Manchin" to retire

The National Republican Senatorial Committee is portraying Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.V.) as a Davos-trekking elitist in a direct mail and digital ad campaign directed at West Virginia voters.

Why it matters: The NRSC's early anti-Manchin messaging is part of a pressure campaign designed to dissuade him from seeking a third term. Manchin is the only Democrat who can realistically hold a Senate seat in one of the most conservative states in the country.

  • "I haven't made a decision what I'm going to do in 2024. I've got two years ahead of me now to do the best I can for the state and for my country," Manchin said on NBC's "Meet the Press" on Sunday.

Details: The NRSC mailer hits Manchin for traveling to the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, last week. "Instead of working in West Virginia, Joe Manchin is hanging out in Switzerland," the back of the mailer reads.

  • The digital ad tags Manchin as "Maserati Manchin," attacking him for living a luxurious lifestyle — owning a fancy car, luxury yacht and racking up big bills at gourmet restaurants.

The bottom line: Manchin's decision to travel to a conference of international jet-setters — along with his public teasing of a possible 2024 presidential campaign — aren't consistent with the actions of a senator trying to lock down his seat in West Virginia.

Go deeper