McConnell to keep grip on GOP even if Republicans lose Senate
Mitch McConnell spent much of his life becoming Senate Majority Leader. And in the past six years, he has used this position to become one of the most consistent party leaders in decades.
But everything could end next January as the Democrats' chances of being adopted by the Senate increase. And the Senate map is so rough for the Republicans in 2022 that a loss in this cycle could lead to a long-term minority stay.
However, 78-year-old McConnell already vows to act as a minority leader in this regard. When asked on Tuesday whether he wanted to remain the GOP leader regardless of the election result, McConnell replied, "I will."
McConnell finds widespread support for staying at the Republican Senate conference regardless of the party's status. GOP senators support him with an overwhelming majority, and no one seems willing to blame McConnell if the party loses control of the chamber in November.
"I would prefer if he were my majority leader," said Senator Mike Rounds (R-S.D.). "I have no objection to Senator McConnell remaining the Republican leader in the Senate, majority or minority."
Senator Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) Added: "I would expect him to be the leader, whether we are a majority or a minority, and I would support that."
McConnell is well aware of his place in history, including the deep contempt that the left feels for him. Whatever his critics say, McConnell sees himself as the guardian of the Senate as an institution and as conservatism as the cause. And with the possibility that his former colleague Joe Biden might be in the Oval Office in January - and Democrat Chuck Schumer as Senate Majority Leader - McConnell and many Republicans believe he shouldn't go anywhere soon.
McConnell, the longest serving senator in Kentucky history, is standing for reelection this year. He will likely face either Amy McGrath, who is supported by most Senate Democrats, or the insurgent liberal candidate Charles Booker. While McConnell is strongly preferred for re-election, his opposition is well funded. The National Democrats are also trying to use McConnell's polarizing reputation to sink its most vulnerable members.
After POLITICO reported that McConnell wanted to remain a GOP leader after the elections, the Senate Democratic campaign arm said that any vulnerable Republican "should answer whether he wants to vote to keep his toxic leader at the top next year." Senate is ".
McConnell, who came to Capitol Hill as an intern in the early 1960s, won his first race in the Senate in 1984 and quickly climbed through the ranks. From 1998, he was Chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee for two cycles, followed by a tenure as majority whip. After the Republicans lost their majority in the 2006 democratic landslide and Senator Bill Frist (R-Tenn.) Retired, McConnell became a minority leader. The Republican victory in 2014 catapulted McConnell into his dream job as a majority leader and has been unchallenged ever since.
McConnell is the longest serving Republican leader in history and overhauled former Senator Bob Dole (R-Kansas) two years ago for this honor. Now, the 16-year record for any late Senator Mike Mansfield (D-Mont.) Party leader is within reach if McConnell can be re-elected while continuing to win leadership races.
"If he served another term, he would either tie or break Mike Mansfield's record, I know that," said Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), Who is retiring and one of McConnell's closest allies.
McConnell's esteem among Republicans is so high that those who could eventually replace him have no problem keeping him as long as he wants. And that makes McConnell's influence on leadership absolutely solid.
"Mitch McConnell will be our leader while he's still interested in the job," said Senator John Cornyn (R-Texas). "After he left this position, I would be interested in following him."
"The chairman has made it clear that he wants to continue serving and he has great confidence in the conference," said John Thune (R-S.D.), Senate majority whip. "I expect that regardless of what happens in November, he will continue to lead the Republican Conference."
Thune succeeded Cornyn in second place in the GOP leadership in 2019, and the two men are considered the favorites for McConnell's future successor.
Cornyn is a former chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee and has raised money for the party. He is also a sharp-edged partisan who has made it increasingly convenient to defend President Donald Trump, with whom he will share a ticket in November.
Stylistically, the lanky Thune is more reserved than Cornyn and more critical than McConnell or Cornyn of Trump's controversial statements, although Thune is always gentle when it comes to making a difference to the President. Thune also considered running for president in 2012 and 2016, but decided against it.
“When I look at the President's race, the timing is all in politics. I'm not aiming for that at the moment, ”said Thune. He called the aspiration to become GOP leader of the Senate "speculative and hypothetical" because McConnell had closed the conference. "At the moment I'm doing what I think to help the team and hopefully get some results."
Since neither Thune nor Cornyn openly try to follow McConnell, the majority leader's way of keeping his job is all the more secure. Whether he wants to remain as a leader when Schumer becomes majority leader and Biden is president is another question.
As a minority leader during Barack Obama's presidency, McConnell disrupted the Democrats' agenda. But majorities in the Senate can be difficult to break: McConnell needed eight years to work in the minority before becoming majority leader.
Schumer could also come under great pressure from the party's progressive wing to end the legislative filibuster, one of the most cherished Senate traditions that would make the minority leader's work much less central.
Former majority leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) Used the "nuclear option" to weaken the filibuster in nominations, and McConnell watered it down further given the steadfast democratic opposition to Trump's nominees. McConnell and Trump have made concerted efforts to reshape the judiciary. Trump has confirmed two candidates for the Supreme Court - largely due to McConnell's blockade of Obama's Supreme Court candidate Merrick Garland - and a record number of federal judges.
Under Trump, McConnell had mixed legislation. Thanks to an impressive last-minute deal by late Senator John McCain (R-Ariz.), In 2017, McConnell Obamacare was unable to pick up, as the Republicans had long promised. There have also been several government shutdowns - which McConnell detests - including the longest in US history. Federal government debt has also increased, and this year's budget deficit could approach $ 4 trillion.
However, McConnell was also able to push through a $ 2 trillion tax cut in 2017 and several trillion US dollars in federal aid to counter the consequences of the coronavirus pandemic. McConnell is promoting this legislation as an important part of his Team Mitch re-election campaign.
McConnell also blatantly welcomes the cloak of being a hard-nosed conservative leader who has made the Senate a "graveyard" for bills passed by the Democratic House. And while Trump once openly criticized McConnell for not having lifted Obamacare, the Kentucky Republican, despite his many personality differences, has become his main ally in Washington.
McConnell has helped quickly end Trump's impeachment process against the Senate four months ago, and now Senate committees are helping to sue the origin of the Russa probe in 2016 - an election campaign that Trump has long sought by the GOP.
"He's probably as good an insider as I've seen in my years here," said Senator Richard Shelby (R-Ala.), Who has spent more than 40 years on Capitol Hill.
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