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As expected, Joe Manchin and John Raese won the Dem and GOP nods Saturday for the special US Senate election in WVa. Ry Rivard at the Charleston Daily Mail boils down the GOP's strategies for beating the popular governor:

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- The Republican playbook for upsetting Gov. Joe Manchin's run for U.S. Senate is taking shape. It includes raising questions about Manchin's conservative bona fides, tying him to the unpopular Obama administration and hoping for low Democratic and high Republican turnout this fall.

Democrat Manchin and Republican businessman John Raese swept their party primaries Saturday. They and Mountain Party candidate Jesse Johnson are each hoping to win a Nov. 2 general election to fill Robert Byrd's unexpired term.

Turnout was dismal - about 12.4 percent - even though it was the first time in more than half century Byrd wasn't on the ballot for Senate.

That's even less than the 14 percent turnout the last time there was a Saturday election in June 2005. The only issue on the ballot then was an unsexy constitutional amendment to allow refinancing of the state's pension debt.

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