Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY.) believes the poor performance of former President Donald Trump’s candidates has to do with the former President’s “diminished” influence in the GOP.
McConnell made the comments in a piece NBC News released on Friday (December 23), relaying his thoughts on what had “changed” in the much-anticipated Red Wave, laying the blame for the GOP not attaining predicted Congressional gains at Trump’s feet.
Republicans are reeling from one of the poorest performances a minority party has faced in a midterm typically poised in their favor to win. After losing critical Senate races, Republicans not only lost in the Senate but gave up one seat to Democrats.
The GOP obtained a four-seat majority in the House, a far cry from the “Red Wave.”
Since the losses, Republicans have blamed Trump’s bevy of far-right candidates.
But McConnell’s condemnation of Trump was more direct, asserting Republicans “lost support… among independents and moderate Republicans,” blaming it on the impression these voters had of the GOP, that the party was “nasty and tended toward chaos” because of Trump.
The Senate Minority Leader added that despite those voters not approving of Biden, “they didn’t have enough confidence in [the GOP] in several instances to give [Republicans] the majority we needed.”
Trump’s candidate losses are bittersweet for McConnell, who, in August, expressed concern about Trump’s “candidate quality.”
At the time, McConnell shared his belief that Republicans in the House would be more likely to win the majority. He asserted that Senate races were “different,” pointing to statewide races leaning on “candidate quality” secure wins.