CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin finds himself losing some high-profile supporters on both sides of the ideological divide ahead of the May 8 primary.
But the Democrat says he's always been a commonsense, responsible Democrat. His campaign also cites the wide-ranging coalition that continues to back him.
The Charleston Gazette endorsed Manchin during the 2010 special primary and general elections. But a Wednesday editorial in West Virginia's largest newspaper leaves it up to readers whether to vote for him this time.
The editorial noted that Manchin won't say whether he'll back President Barack Obama at the top of his party's ticket. It also cites his vote with Republicans on a birth control issue.
But Manchin's votes on reproductive health have also cost him the longtime support of West Virginians for Life.
(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)