Ahead of the midterm elections, many Republicans were confident about an incoming red wave. Much of this confidence stemmed from GOP candidates speaking to Americans about top-of-mind concerns, while Democrats tried to deflect.
The economy also worked against Democrats, as did Joe Biden’s low approval ratings. While Republicans certainly had some wins on Tuesday, things could have been much better for the party. The Senate, for example, still remains in limbo as key races in Arizona and Georgia have yet to work themselves out.
As the party reflects, some of the blame is being placed on the shoulders of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY).
Criticism From Club For Growth
The fiscally conservative Club For Growth takes issue with how McConnell approached this year’s pivotal midterms. According to the group’s president, McConnell should have framed the midterm elections as a check on Biden’s failures, particularly those involving the economy.
Throughout the election cycle, many polls projected that Republicans would have massive victories. These predictions were not just because of the economy, but also due to Biden’s failure to connect with voters on key issues.
Blake Masters is in a race to the finish with Cartel Kelly. If Mitch had spent in Arizona — instead of blackballing Blake and funneling money in Alaska to defeat the de fact GOP nominee — Blake would have already won handily. This was a deliberate choice.
— Stephen Miller (@StephenM) November 10, 2022
The ways in which McConnell chose to back certain Republicans was also criticized by Club For Growth. The Senate Minority Leader is under fire for not fully investing funds into candidates who could have benefited from it in their elections.
Ultimately, Club For Growth is sending the message that McConnell was more fixated on trying to benefit his own status than trying to ensure Republicans regained the Senate majority.
Had he put in more effort on behalf of Republican candidates in competitive races, the GOP may have already won the Senate. Now, the fate of the upper chamber remains up in the air.
A Bad Pattern With McConnell
Unfortunately, the issues being raised by Club For Growth are not an outlier for McConnell. Months into the midterms, he gave Republicans pause after saying the party was less likely to win the Senate than the House.
McConnell cited the quality of GOP candidates, along with Senate races being statewide elections, as reasons why Republicans may not win.
.@LeaderMcConnell has got to go! Here is the breakdown of money spent in some battleground senate seats:
AZ – Masters $9m vs Kelly $73m
GA – Walker $32m vs Warnock $76m
NV – Laxalt $12m vs Cortes $47m
NH – Bolduc $2m vs Hassan $36m
Americans deserve an America First Leader!
— Lou Dobbs (@LouDobbs) November 10, 2022
After taking a lot of backlash over this from the conservative movement, McConnell tried to walk things back, saying Republicans could potentially regain the Senate majority after all.
Thus far, the Senate Minority Leader has yet to respond to the concerns raised by Club For Growth.