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West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin III said on "Your World" that former coal baron Don Blankenship was the "only truly conservative Republican" candidate in Tuesday's primary race.

Blankenship, a Republican from Williamson who spent a year in prison in the wake of the Upper Big Branch mine disaster, finished third in the primary balloting.

Manchin said he and Blankenship "had our differences on the issues" but that people "cannot question Don's conservatism and being a Republican."

"There was only one truly conservative West Virginian in the race," Manchin said.

He said he "handicapped" the Republican primary and had predicted that Attorney General Patrick Morrisey would win, as he did.

Manchin said he fondly remembers working with second-place finisher Rep. Evan Jenkins (R-Huntington) when Jenkins was a Democrat in Congress.

Neil Cavuto said Blankenship praised Manchin at times in the past and has not been willing to support the nominee Morrisey.

He asked Manchin if he would want the controversial Blankenship's support.

Blankenship made headlines for racially charged attacks on Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) and his family, calling him "Cocaine Mitch" and labeling his father-in-law a "wealthy China person."

"I have no control over [an endorsement] whatsoever," Manchin said. "Don has to make his decision what he's comfortable with."

Manchin said he is not as concerned as some observers are at the prospects of him winning a head-to-head race with Morrisey in November.

While President Donald Trump won West Virginia by double-digit percentage points, Manchin said the same was true in 2012 for now-Utah U.S. Senate candidate Mitt Romney against incumbent President Barack Obama.

Manchin added that he is one Democrat who will pledge to support Trump's nominee for CIA director, Gina Haspel.

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