Senate is shifting away from McConnell-type Republicans

 May 5, 2024

It appears that the U.S. Senate, in the coming years, could make a significant shift away from establishment-type Republicans, such as current Senator Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) toward more anti-establishment, pro-Trump Republicans. 

There are a number of signs pointing to this shift, besides McConnell's recent decision to give up his Republican leadership position.

The Hill, for example, recently reported that a number of Republican Senate candidates - in addition to current Senate Republicans - have come out against providing more funding for Ukraine.

Although this might not seem like a big deal at first glance, it is.

Here's why:

As the reader likely knows, there have been major battles in Congress, this term, regarding whether or not to send more U.S. taxpayer money to Ukraine to help fight off Russia.

These battles, however, have been less pronounced in the Senate, and McConnell is a large part of the reason why. McConnell and his Senate Republican allies, recently, were more than willing to team up with the Democrats to send another $95 billion to Ukraine, Israel, and Taiwan. McConnell managed to get 30 of his fellow Senate Republicans to join him.

The Hill, however, points out that "McConnell’s defectors are coming from the newer classes of GOP senators; 11 of the 17 Senate Republicans in their first term voted against Ukraine aid."

Not only that, but the outlet adds, "At least four GOP candidates — Tim Sheehy in Montana, Bernie Moreno in Ohio, Kari Lake in Arizona, and Rep. Jim Banks in Indiana — have said or indicated they would have voted against aid to Ukraine."

In other words, the Senate clearly seems to be shifting away from McConnell and his ilk.

Looking ahead

McConnell has been the longest-serving Senate leader in U.S. history. This streak will come to an end in November.

The big question going forward is who is going to replace McConnell as the next leader of Senate Republicans.

It appears that there is going to be a strong push to get one of McConnell's Senate allies, such as U.S. Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX), to take his spot.

But, there is going to be an equally strong push - if not an even stronger push - to put more of a Trump-type Republican in this spot, such as, perhaps, U.S. Sen. Rick Scott (R-FL).

In the long run, it appears that the more populist type of Republicans will take over in D.C. But, this shift can be slowed down if one of McConnell's allies wins the leadership spot.

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