GOP Hopes Cash Surge Can Salvage Senate Candidates’ Struggles

by | Aug 24, 2022 | Politics

On Friday night, Fox News host Sean Hannity had a bone to pick with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.). A day earlier, in an interview in his home state of Kentucky, McConnell had delivered a not-so-subtle critique of the candidates he’s counting on to give him control of the Senate in 2023. “I think there’s probably a greater likelihood the House flips than the Senate,” he said when asked about November’s midterm elections. “Senate races are just different, they’re statewide, candidate quality has a lot to do with the outcome.”AdvertisementHannity, perhaps the nighttime Fox News host most obsequious to the GOP, didn’t like what he heard.“Democrats are painting Republican Senate candidates in upcoming elections and midterms as cruel and out of touch,” he said. “Apparently, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell is content to leave them out to dry and fend for themselves.”The back-and-forth between the politician and the pundit had the makings of the beginning of a blame game, exposing a barely hidden feud between McConnell’s political operation and the more Donald Trump-friendly operatives at the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC), as the GOP faces the possibility it may fall short of capturing Congress’ upper chamber.The causes for Republicans’ frustration are numerous: Their candidates in key states, they privately acknowledge, are disappointing at best. Democrats have surged to massive fundraising advantages, while expensive and bitter Republican primaries have cost millions of dollars worth of political treasure and left lasting marks.But neither party believes the battle for the 50-50 Senate will be anything short of a donnybrook. The political environment for Democrats remains poor, with rampant but cooling inflation and President Joe Biden’s low approval rating driving voter sentiment nationally. And the GOP’s equivalent of the Death Star — the cash-rich Senate Leadership Fund (SLF), which is controlled by McConnell allies — is only just now moving into position to hammer Democrats with ads about inflation, immigration and crime. AdvertisementOver the cou …

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