Senators Indicate the End of McConnell’s Senate Leadership

Numerous Republican senators, including Josh Hawley (MO), Marco Rubio (FL), Mike Lee (UT), Ron Johnson (WI), Ted Cruz (TX), and others have raised the alarm that Mitch McConnell’s time in Senate leadership may be coming to a close. Eric Schmitt of Missouri told reporters, “Mitch McConnell was elected to the Senate in 1985. I think the party’s priorities changed pretty dramatically.” McConnell has also received criticism from Republicans for pulling financial support from GOP candidates and instead using funds against Republican-backed midterm candidates.

From The Federalist:

At a rally the day before Election Day, the soon-to-be senior senator from Missouri reportedly said, when asked who should lead the GOP in the Senate, “not Mitch McConnell.”

“I’m not sure if any other senator will run or not. Nobody’s indicated they would. But my view is that we need new leadership in that position,” [Josh Hawley] told reporters.

In an interview with RealClearPolitics on Friday, Hawley blamed McConnell and “Washington Republicanism” for Republicans’ lack of a clear midterm strategy. “I’m not going to support the current leadership in the party,” he reiterated. Hawley also slammed McConnell for caving to Democrats’ demands on a gun control bill and a climate spending wishlist “billed as infrastructure,” and for abandoning Republicans in key midterm races.

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The Texas senator [Ted Cruz] called for postponing the Senate leadership vote late Friday afternoon. “It makes no sense for Senate to have leadership elections before GA runoff. We don’t yet know whether we’ll have a majority & Herschel Walker deserves a say in our leadership,” he said.

“Critically, we need to hear a specific plan for the next 2 yrs from any candidate for leadership,” Cruz added, insinuating discontentment with McConnell’s current leadership and a willingness to support a challenge to the minority leader.