Much to the disappointment of many Americans, Democrats wound up keeping the Senate majority during this year’s midterm elections. Many races in key swing states came down to the wire. Though as it stands today, Republicans will ultimately end up with either 49 or 50 Senate seats.
The Georgia runoff election between Sen. Raphael Warnock (D-GA) and Republican opponent Herschel Walker will determine the difference. Democrats are already expressing their clear interest in having a solid majority with 51 seats for their party.
Due to the Georgia runoff election that remains ongoing, some Republicans in the Senate are calling for a delay on the vote for the GOP leader of this chamber.
The Argument For Postponement
Since Walker could very well end up taking Warnock’s seat, Republicans believe the original voting date of November 16 is too premature.
GOP senators who expressed this view include Ted Cruz, Mike Lee, Marco Rubio, and Josh Hawley. Joining them is now Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), who says Republicans’ attention is best focused on Georgia.
I expect a vote tomorrow in the Senate Republican Conference on whether we should delay leadership elections until after Georgia.
I will also be part of making that motion.
— Lindsey Graham (@LindseyGrahamSC) November 15, 2022
In stating his position, Graham also announced that he is looking forward to a Wednesday vote that will decide whether leadership elections are postponed until after the runoff.
Similar rhetoric comes from Cruz, who pointed out that if Walker wins the Georgia Senate seat, he deserves to have a vote on the GOP leader.
Republicans have also pointed out that since their party will be in the minority, there should not be a rush to hold this election before Walker’s race concludes.
The End For McConnell?
Whenever the vote on Senate GOP leadership takes place, it could very well mean the end of Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) as the minority leader.
McConnell has been repeatedly accused of prioritizing his own political power over the best interests of the GOP. During the midterms, McConnell openly said he did not believe Republicans could truly win the Senate, due to the quality of candidates on the ballot.
On top of this, McConnell withdrew funding for races that could have helped Republicans win the upper chamber.
Republican leadership needs a plan to fight the disastrous policies from the Biden admin.
After a disappointing election, it's ridiculous for Republicans to immediately rubber stamp the same leadership without having this discussion. 2/x
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) November 16, 2022
Arizona Republican Blake Masters is one example. McConnell specifically pulled funding after Masters announced that he would not support McConnell as a GOP leader in Congress.
If McConnell does wind up being voted out, his replacement will undoubtedly be a considerable improvement.