Russ Weeks. That's his name. Russ Weeks is the guy challenging Democratic Governor Joe Machin this election year. Russ Weeks. If you don't know that name, don't feel bad. You're definitely not alone. I happened to know that Manchin was running against a Weeks...but I had no idea what his first name was until I looked it up. Russ Weeks.
So, Russ Weeks is the best the Republican party could come up with in West Virginia. Weeks is a former State Senator from Beckley who lost in 2006. To many, it was a shock that he defeated Bill Wooten in 2002 for the senatorial seat, his first elected position. Weeks might be a nice guy. I don't know anything about him. If you want to learn more, visit his website. After much debate, I decided not to contribute to his campaign despite the fact that "every donor who contributes at least $20 to the Russ Weeks campaign will receive a personalized MBA "diploma" from the University of Mojo." His motto: No Mo MoJo. Which, luckily, also has a website.
It would be rather funny if it weren't so sad. There was very little chance that anyone would have defeated Manchin this election cycle. However, there are a lot of West Virginia citizens who would like a choice and would like to voice their displeasure towards Machin. Weeks hardly gives them that opportunity. A lot of complaints stem from the Heather Bresch incident and Manchin's perceived meddling in WVU affairs, but there are still other real issues that deserve real solutions.
So, Manchin wins a second term by default. If he doesn't get 80% of the vote, he should really be concerned about what people out there really think of him. Of course, what really makes the difference at this point. Republicans have run from Joe and granted him a second term. Not much drama there...the drama comes when Joe makes policy. And only then.