Politics

West Virginia Supreme Court Keeps Don Blankenship Off Senate Ballot

After losing GOP primary, Blankenship has tried to run under Constitution Party

Don Blankenship lost West Virginia’s Republican Senate primary in May. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

In a bright spot for Republican Patrick Morrisey’s Senate bid, the West Virginia Supreme Court upheld the secretary of state’s decision that former Massey Energy CEO Don Blankenship cannot run for Senate under the Constitution Party line. 

Blankenship finished third in May’s GOP Senate primary but has tried to run as a third-party candidate. 

“The West Virginia Secretary of State is ordered to take whatever measures are necessary to ensure that Donald L. Blankenship does not appear on the 2018 General Election Ballot for the Office of United States Senator for the State of West Virginia,” the court wrote in its order, according to The Charleston Gazette-Mail.

Morrisey, the state attorney general, won the three-way primary in May to face Democratic incumbent Joe Manchin III in a race Inside Elections with Nathan L. Gonzales rates Tilts Democratic.

The GOP nominee put out a one-sentence statement reacting to the order: “No more distractions to hide lying liberal Joe Manchin’s record of supporting pro-abortion policies, gun control, and Hillary Clinton’s campaign against coal miners.”

Blankenship said in a statement Wednesday that he and his lawyers would be “evaluating our next steps.” 

“The court’s decision is good for me and my family personally,” Blankenship said. “However, we regret not being able to help all West Virginians — particularly the unborn and the drug addicted.”

Get breaking news alerts and more from Roll Call on your iPhone or your Android.