Joe Manchin picks Senate over governor's bid

Sen. Manchin eyeing the exit?
Sen. Manchin eyeing the exit?

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    Sen. Manchin eyeing the exit?

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Sen. Manchin eyeing the exit? 03:53

(CNN)West Virginia Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin says he'll run for re-election to the Senate, rather than a return to the governor's office he once held.

"If my country does well, then my state will do well," he said as he announced his decision Sunday on CBS's "Face the Nation."
Manchin's decision comes after more than a year of speculation that the centrist has tired of Washington and wanted the job he held from 2005 to 2010 back. He left the governor's office when he ran in and won a special election to replace Sen. Robert Byrd in 2010, and then won a full term in 2012. He's up for re-election in 2018.
    By staying in the Senate, Manchin could help Democrats hang onto the seat in the heavily Republican state where they have otherwise struggled in recent years.
    "I truly believed we could take that success and our commonsense approaches to Washington to improve the dysfunction in Congress," he said of his decision to enter the Senate in 2010.
    "I will admit that it has been a harder transition than I had expected, but I believe that, after five years, we are beginning to make a difference," he said. "We are simply bringing a greater sense of bipartisanship and commitment to working together for the good of the American people."