According to attendees at a closed-door meeting, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell isn’t counting Republicans out in the fight for the Senate yet.
McConnell expressed optimism about his party’s chances of winning the midterm elections despite his comments regarding the GOP’s prospects of reclaiming the power over the upper chamber. McConnell spoke to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce for 45 minutes Monday, Axios reported.
McConnell’s statement last month that Republicans have a better chance of riding the red wave to victory in Congress raised eyebrows. However, he described the Senate as being “extremely close”. McConnell also expressed concern about the quality of Republican candidates.
As political analysts began to favor the Democrats, his comments were made. The Republicans had been widely expected to win the House and the Senate by a narrow margin when this summer began. However, the impact of Dobbs-v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, and other Democratic legislative accomplishments, had weakened the GOP’s lead in polling.
The drop in gas prices and the rise of President Joe Biden’s pathetic poll numbers were further factors that fueled the shift. FiveThirtyEight forecasts that Democrats will win the Senate in 71 to 100, a change from the previous prediction which predicted Democratic doom at the midterms.
McConnell’s views on the GOP’s prospects were different from that of Sen. Rick Scott (R.FL), who expressed total confidence in his party’s ability to regain the upper chamber. Scott was reportedly being considered by Donald Trump to be the Senate’s leader, but he has been subject to criticism from his handling of Senate GOP.
Each party will need one seat to tilt the balance in their favor, with the Senate split at 50-50. Republicans are fighting for tough seats in Wisconsin and Pennsylvania, while Democrats fight to keep Republicans at bay in Arizona and Nevada.
Recent polls from Wisconsin and Georgia have given Republicans hope that they can win these races. They are still down in Pennsylvania where Dr. Mehmet Oz continues to trail John Fetterman despite having gained ground in recent weeks.
McConnell’s pursuit of the Chamber occurs as members of his party, such as Donald Trump Jr. have tried to distance themselves form it and criticize the organization for not adhering the MAGA agenda.
According to reports, Chuck Schumer, the Senate Majority Leader (D-NY), has warned his fellow Democrats about the possibility of losing the House while giving his party an approximate 60% chance of winning it.