This is a few days old, but now that we know Joe Manchin is going to announce his pick for Robert Byrd's temporary successor on Friday, here's a short list of six possible names from Reid Wilson at Hotline On Call:
Anne Barth:: Barth was Byrd's state director for years before mounting an unsuccessful bid against Rep. Shelley Moore Capito (R) in '08. Byrd even cut a campaign ad for Barth, and she would be intimately familiar with his office's operation.
Gaston Caperton: Caperton served as governor from '89 to '97, and he would serve as the elder statesman during his brief term in the Senate. He lives in NY, but it wouldn't be hard to convince him to come home. Still, some have questioned his relationship with Manchin, which is said to be testy, even though Caperton has been a guest in the governor's mansion.
Nick Casey: An attorney from Charleston, Casey was chairman of the state Dem Party. He's close to Manchin, an important plus. But Casey is hoping for an appointment as a federal judge; he had Byrd's support for a nomination. He is reportedly concerned that a nomination would be scuttled by an appointment.
Carte Goodwin: A former general counsel to Manchin, Goodwin has the governor's trust, according to WV political analyst Hoppy Kercheval, and he's a member of a long-time WV political dynasty. Goodwin is contemplating his own political future, according to Kercheval.
Larry Puccio: Puccio served as Manchin's chief of staff during his first term, and he now chairs the state Dem Party. He's one of the governor's closest advisors. If Manchin sees other contenders as possible rivals in the future, he may tap Puccio as a pure placeholder.
Bob Wise: Wise served a single term as governor, ditching office after an affair with an employee came to light. But he wouldn't need to learn a lot about DC -- he served in Congress for 9 terms before running for governor.