By Elaine Donnelly
Extending sexual misconduct to combat units
Independent voices from the TWT Communities
The decision by Sen. John D. Rockefeller IV, West Virginia Democrat, not to seek another term in the Senate is the first dent in Democrats' chances of hanging onto power in the upper chamber in 2014 — and emblematic of the challenges the party faces in protecting seats they hold in red states.
Mr. Crichlow said it would have been a tight race between Mrs. Capito and Mr. Rockefeller, and said that Mrs. Capito has to be "considered the favorite" because it is not clear who Democrats will put up against her.
"You have these two giant names in Democratic politics [in West Virginia] — one being Rockefeller and one being Manchin — and one of them is gone forever," Mr. Crichlow said, alluding to the family of the state's other senator, Joe Manchin III. "That is a big thing. It takes a long time in West Virginia to develop a name for yourself. So, when you lose someone at that level, it is going to be a blow to the party."