McConnell vows he’s returning to the Senate after reports GOP leaders are making plans for his succession

McConnell vows he’s returning to the Senate after reports GOP leaders are making plans for his succession
Gage Skidmore

GOP Minority Leader Mitch McConnell is Thursday afternoon issued a statement vowing to return to the Senate after a report swirled on social media that the 79-year old Kentucky Republican’s leadership team was making plans to find his successor.

“I am looking forward to returning to the Senate on Monday. We’ve got important business to tackle and big fights to win for Kentuckians and the American people,” McConnell said in a post on Twitter at 2:30 PM.

McConnell did not disavow the claim his leadership team is searching for his successor, nor did he state he will not be retiring soon.

“Senate GOP leader Mitch McConnell has been out of the public eye for weeks, following a serious fall that hospitalized him,” The Spectator reported. “Now multiple sources confirm that Senators John Barrasso of North Dakota, John Cornyn of Texas and John Thune of South Dakota are actively reaching out to fellow Republican senators in efforts to prepare for an anticipated leadership vote — a vote that would occur upon announcement that McConnell would be retiring from his duties as leader, and presumably the Senate itself.”

The Spectator’s report came just days after McConnell told a Kentucky PBS affiliate, “I’m still in the height of my career,” and insisted, “I’m at the top of my game.”

That report was heavily shared on social media, with Republicans and Democrats alike tweeting it.

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Leader McConnell was first elected to the U.S Senate in 1984, nearly four decades ago, and has held leadership positions for the past two decades, including Senate Majority Leader from 2015 to 2021. McConnell is the longest-serving Senate Republican leader in U.S. history.

Last year Politico reported on the massive number of right-wing judges McConnell has pushed through for Senate confirmation.

“After Democrats took the House in 2018, McConnell went into overdrive and nearly doubled his pace of lower-court confirmations. Ultimately, Trump and McConnell ushered in three new Supreme Court justices, 54 Circuit Court justices and 174 District Court justices — all lifetime appointees, many of them relatively young.”

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“One source says that Cornyn has been particularly active in his preparations, taking fellow senators with whom he has little in common to lunch in attempts to court them,” adds The Spectator.

One year before he passed away in 2021, The New Yorker reported former Senate Democratic Majority Leader Harry Reid “thinks that it’s time for some redress for what he regards as the theft of those two” U.S. Supreme Court seats.

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