MORGANTOWN, WV (AP) – West Virginia’s Democratic U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin says following his latest talk with President-elect Donald Trump that he will remain in the Senate.
Manchin, in a statement Tuesday, says he was “humbled to be considered for the secretary of energy position,” but he can best serve the state as a senator.
Manchin, whose state voted overwhelmingly for Trump last month, said he can best serve the Mountaineer State in the Senate. Manchin is up for re-election in 2018.
Manchin’s comments came after reports that former Texas Gov. Rick Perry has been selected to run the Energy Department.
West Virginia has a troubled coal industry Trump has promised to help.
Manchin says he’s committed to working with Trump’s administration to find ways to pass his bill to protect union miners’ health care and pensions, address the opioid crisis that’s hit West Virginia especially hard, rebuild infrastructure, fix the tax code and build the economy.
Manchin’s statement: “I had a very productive and informative meeting with President-elect Trump. I was honored that the President-elect asked me to meet with him and discuss ways we can work together and improve the lives of millions of Americans, and the hard-working people of West Virginia. I was humbled to be considered for the Secretary of Energy position. I have dedicated my life in public service to doing what is best for the people of West Virginia. Right now, I believe that I can best serve my state of West Virginia in the United States Senate. I hope all Americans join me in working with President-elect Trump in a bipartisan way to bring our country together and make it successful. I am committed to working with President Trump and his Administration to find commonsense solutions to pass the Miners Protection Act, solve our opioid crisis, rebuild our infrastructure, reform our broken tax code, keep faith with our veterans and build an economy that works for all Americans.”