Republican races , West Virginia primary voting four states.

Bitter Republican . Senate races West Virginia featuring candidates fought to prove loyalty to President will highlight a slate of high-stakes party primaries in four states on Tuesday.

Simultaneously voters in Ohio North Carolina also pick candidates on Tuesday for November’s congressional . When Democrats must pick up seats in Senate. 23 more in of Representative to recapture control of Congress blunt Trump’s agenda.

All four of states holding primaries were won by Trump in 2016.  and made Democratic incumbents Joe Manchin of West Virginia and of states that Trump won by double-digit margins of . Senate targets in November.

But Republican Senate prospects in state hurt by bruising . That has seen contenders battle to show is closest to Trump . a conventional politician.

Trump waded into the West Virginia race on Monday to urge to reject former coal executive Don Blankenship. released from prison last ? After serving time for safety violations in a 2010 disaster that killed 29 miners?

Trump said he feared Blankenship. Who has cast himself as an anti-establishment the president?  defeat Manchin in November. Trump expressed a preference for of Blankenship’s top rivals. . state Attorney General Patrick Morrisey.

“Remember Alabama,” Trump warned voters. When recalling the Democratic victory in a special Senate election last in the deeply conservative state. After nominated Roy Moore, accused of sexual harassment and of teenage girls in his 30s.

Blankenship has attacked Republican Senate Leader McConnell, accusing him of undermining Trump, for “China ” and running TV ads highlighting the Taiwanese heritage of McConnell’s wife, drawing widespread condemnation.

Under those circumstances “I will say, all the media isn’t hurting him at all,” Patrick Hickey, a political scientist at West Virginia , said of Blankenship. “There is a real here that career politicians are only out for themselves.”

However, in Indiana, the top Republican contenders to challenge Donnelly also sharply criticized while praising Trump. U.S. Representatives Luke Messer and Todd Rokita, longtime rivals, and self-funding businessman Mike Braun, have traded personal insults.

“There is absolutely no daylight between them on any issues,” to quote Marjorie Hershey, professor of political at Indiana . “The race has been almost entirely personal attacks.”

But Braun, a former state legislator who has spent more than $5 million of his money on the race, has made headway portraying the members of Congress as indistinguishable “swamp creatures” who are products of .

Therefore Trump and Vice President Mike Pence have already scheduled a campaign in Indiana on Thursday, indicating the priority that the is putting on the Indiana race  and willingness to whoever emerges from the primary.

However in Ohio, Democratic Senator Sherrod Brown is top Republican target. U.S. Representative Jim Renacci won Trump’s endorsement and he considered as the favorite for the Republican Senate nomination over -area investment banker .

Nevertheless, Gibbons filed a defamation lawsuit against Renacci, alleging his campaign falsely claimed Gibbons was anti-Trump.

Meanwhile, Democrats also have a competitive primary to succeed Republican Governor . Richard Cordray, the former head of the Consumer Protection Bureau, is facing , the former mayor, member of Congress and presidential candidate, in a battle of favorites.

Cordray has received the endorsement of Senator Elizabeth Warren, while Kucinich has the backing of key allies of 2016 Democratic presidential contender Senator Bernie Sanders.

Source: Reporting by John Whitesides; Editing by Peter Cooney / Publisher: The Thomson Reuters

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