McConnell says ‘unacceptable’ candidates could ruin GOP’s midterm chances

  • Mitch McConnell said some GOP candidates winning the primaries could ruin the party’s midterm chances.
  • He said it was “in fact possible” that the GOP would lose, despite the Democratic Party’s problems.
  • “You can’t nominate someone who is somehow unacceptable to a larger group of people and win,” he said.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said Tuesday there was still a chance the Republican Party could lose midterms if it ran a slate of “unacceptable” candidates in key races.

Speaking at an event hosted by the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce on Tuesday, McConnell said the GOP’s chances of regaining control of the Senate were good, except for generic candidates who could spoil the party’s chances.

McConnell said the 1994 election was the best year Republicans have had and said he thought the atmosphere moving into that year’s midterms “is better than it was in 1994”.

“Atmospherically, this is a perfect storm of trouble for Democrats because this is an all-Democratic government,” McConnell said. “Which leads you to ask the question, ‘How could you screw this up?’ It’s actually possible, and we’ve experienced it in the past.

“In the Senate, if you look at where we have to compete for a majority, there are places that are competitive in the general election,” McConnell added. “So you can’t nominate someone who is just somehow unacceptable to a larger group of people and win.”

He added that in the past there had been cases of “weird people” who had won primary elections but whose chances of winning seats had vanished in November when the midterm elections tipped.

“So far, I’m optimistic that in the places that will determine who will be the next Majority Leader, we’ll have fully eligible candidates,” McConnell said, pointing to states like Georgia, Arizona, Missouri, Nevada, Pennsylvania. , North Carolina, New Hampshire and Ohio.

“Having fully eligible candidates is essential on the part of the Senate,” he said.

The GOP currently holds the minority in the Senate but only needs one more seat to shift the current 50-50 balance in its favor.

McConnell did not say who he thinks would be “unacceptable” as a Senate candidate. However, former President Trump has drawn the ire of some conservatives by backing Mehmet Oz – better known as Dr Oz – in his bid to become a Pennsylvania senator.

Some Trump-backed candidates like Pennsylvania Senate nominee Sean Parnell and Missouri Senate nominee Eric Greitens have had scandal-ridden races. Parnell suspended his campaign after facing allegations of domestic abuse by his ex-wife, while Greitens is currently pushing back against allegations of physical abuse made by his ex-wife.

In February, The New York Times reported that McConnell was working quietly behind the scenes to try to ensure that some Trump-backed candidates he allegedly called “goofballs” did not win their Senate primaries.

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