If Republicans fumble the Senate, who's most to blame?
The pros point to Trump, but the MAGA base won't swallow that judgement.
If Republicans flounder in their effort to recapture the U.S. Senate in 55 days, an inevitable blame game will commence over who’s most responsible for their midterm belly flop. GOP political professionals stand ready to point at Donald Trump, who deposited primary endorsements in six of the most competitive general election contests. But the former president’s MAGA base will likely repel against such a judgment and reach for other scapegoats. And a relatively innocuous comment made by Mitch McConnell about candidate quality will hand Trump and his backers just enough ammunition to try and shift blame onto the Kentuckian, who remains unpopular with the Republican base across the country.
McConnell, who loathes to litigate internecine party fights in public, could be somewhat shielded by boiling animus among some operatives at Rick Scott, the Floridian who helms the National Republican Senatorial Committee and harbors presidential ambitions.
“If McConnell was chairman of the senatorial committee, we’d have better nominees… because he would’ve intervened in those places,” said Charlie Black, a longtime Washington Republican operator who thinks the Senate GOP leader would have chosen to pick favorites in a host of competitive primaries this year.
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