Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) urges Republicans to postpone next week’s Senate leadership vote;
“The Senate GOP leadership vote next week should be postponed,” Rubio tweeted. “First we need to make sure that those who want to lead us are genuinely committed to fighting for the priorities & values of the working Americans (of every background) who gave us big wins in states like Florida.
Rubio serves alongside Sen. Rick Scott (R-FL), who had been gearing up a challenge against Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and reportedly received former President Donald Trump’s blessing. Since his White House departure, Trump has frequently admonished McConnell.
Scott seemingly bowed out of the race when it became unclear whether the GOP would climb back to power in the upper chamber,though he has not publicly ruled it out, according to a Politico report. With several races outstanding and Georgia heading to a runoff, it could take weeks before it’s clear which party will rule the Senate.
Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO), who has publicly signaled he would vote against McConnell alongside his fellow Sen.-elect Eric Schmitt, quickly backed Rubio’s plea on Twitter.
“Exactly right. I don’t know why Senate GOP would hold a leadership vote for the next Congress before this election is finished. We have a runoff in #GASenate – are they saying that doesn’t matter? Don’t disenfranchise Herschel Walker,” Hawley tweeted.
Some conservatives have also raised concerns that former President Donald Trump’s “very big announcement” on Nov. 15, in which he is speculated to launch his 2024 presidential bid, could dissuade voters from backing Georgia Senate hopeful Herschel Walker in the runoff.
Republicans headed into the midterm elections expecting a booming victory but were stunned by a series of surprising defeats and a weaker performance in House races than projected. Florida was one of the few bright spots for Republicans.
At age 80, McConnell has led the Senate GOP since 2007. McConnell has been a frequent target of the MAGA base and caricatured as a creature of the establishment. Over the summer, he commented that candidate quality could hinder GOP prospects of roaring back to power in the Senate.