CHARLESTON — West Virginia voters have decided to send U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin back to Capitol Hill for another six years.
The Democrat defeated Republican John Raese and Bob Henry Baber of the Mountain Party Tuesday evening.
Early poll data, with 25 Mingo County precincts reporting in, shows that Manchin claimed 4,441 votes from Mingo Countians, 73.44 percent. Raese had 1,497 votes, 24.76 percent, while Baber had 105 votes, 1.74 percent.
Moments after winning, Manchin spoke to hundreds of supporters, urging all Americans to come together, put politics aside and put the country first. The senator asked the winner of the Presidential race to embark on a 50-state tour to heal partisan divisions.
Manchin also thanked the people of West Virginia for "their continued faith and confidence in his efforts to work across the aisle on commonsense solutions to the problems facing the nation," a release from Manchin's office stated.
“The people of West Virginia have once again given me their faith and confidence, and I am thankful to have six more years to fight for you," Manchin said. "I also thank my opponents – John Raese and Bob Henry Baber – for a spirited campaign and for participating in our great democracy.
“I am going back to Washington more determined than ever to move this country forward, bring people together, get this economy growing stronger, put our financial house in order and create an energy plan that works – just like we did in West Virginia.
“The campaign is over, and now is the time for us to put the past behind us and move ahead to a brighter future. Now is the time for us to build on the foundation our grandparents and parents built for us – and make sure we leave this country in better shape for the next generation," Manchin said.
"Now is the time for us to roll up our sleeves and work side by side to rebuild America. We all face the same challenges tomorrow, but we will face them together, as Americans. I believe that there are just as many Republicans and Democrats who want the same thing – to bring this country together. Because I still believe in an American Dream where our future can be brighter than our past.”
Manchin was governor when he beat Raese in 2010 to complete the Senate term left by the late Robert C. Byrd.
The Associated Press contributed to this article.