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Monday, April 22, 2024

Trump Quietly Unveils Successor Pick to Replace McConnell

'I told [Trump] the most important thing I can do this moment is to make sure we have a Senate majority in November...'

(Luis CornelioHeadline USA) Former President Donald Trump has secretly disclosed his pick to succeed Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, who stirred Congress into a frenzy on Wednesday by announcing his retirement by the end of the year. 

Trump privately encouraged Sen. Steve Daines, R-Mont., to pursue the leadership position set to become vacant upon McConnell’s departure, several media outlets reported on Thursday. 

Daines, currently serving as the chair of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, emphasized his focus on securing the majority ahead of the 2024 election.

“I told [Trump] the most important thing I can do this moment is to make sure we have a Senate majority in November,” Daines told Politico after the outlet revealed that Trump’s endorsement of Daines occurred before McConnell’s announcement. 

Shortly after McConnell’s retirement announcement, several names were rumored to be potential replacements, including Minority Whip John Thune, R-S.D.; Republican Conference Chair John Barrasso, R-Wy.; and former Whip John Cornyn. 

Out of the three, only Cornyn has officially declared his bid. “I am asking my Republican colleagues to give me the opportunity to succeed Leader McConnell,” Cornyn said in a statement, as reported by the Hill.

“Throughout my time I’ve built a track record of listening to colleagues and seeking consensus, while leading the fight to stop bad policies that are harmful to our nation and the conservative cause,” he added. 

Sen. Rick Scott, R-Fla., another rumored candidate, stated that whoever replaces McConnell should have a “relationship” with the Republican president.

Sen. Josh Hawley expressed his preference for Scott or Daines to become the next leader. While welcoming McConnell’s exit, Hawley remarked that it should have occurred last year. 

“It’s time. My only question is, why wait until November? We need new leadership now,” he said, according to Newsweek.

McConnell is the longest-serving Senate leader, with 17 years under his belt. He was first elected to the Senate in 1985. 

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