The Republican Party is in total turmoil after incumbent Democratic United States Senator Catherine Cortez Masto was reelected to a second term by Nevada voters late Saturday night. Thanks to Masto's win, Democrats will maintain their Senate majority in 2023, and they may pick up an additional seat if incumbent Senator Raphael Warnock of Georgia defeats Trump-endorsed right-wing candidate Herschel Walker in their December 6th runoff election.
Republican Senator Rick Scott of Florida, the chair of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, proclaimed on Fox News that the midterms were a "complete disappointment." Scott added that the GOP "didn't have enough of a positive message," despite it being his job to get Republicans elected. Watch below:
'In awe of the incompetence': Mitch McConnell bombarded after Democrats gain Senate majority | RawStory.TV'In awe of the incompetence': Mitch McConnell bombarded after Democrats gain Senate majority | RawStory.TV
The GOP and McConnell hoped to flip the Senate in last week’s election, but that didn't happen. That means McConnell, whom Senate Republicans are expected to keep as their top official, is set to remain Senate minority leader ― a leadership role he got demoted to in January 2021 after Democrats won a razor-thin majority.
Here's what that means for the kind of power he'll be able to wield.
The majority leader has the ability to determine which proposals do and don't come up for a vote in the Senate.
Thanks to Democrats' victory, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer is lined up to keep setting the agenda instead.
Democrats didn't win a 60-seat Senate majority, so McConnell and other Republican senators retain their ability to block most legislation.
Thanks to the filibuster — a 60-vote threshold senators must meet to advance most bills — Democrats need support from several Republicans, at least, to pass plenty of proposals. That gives McConnell and his team influence over what bills succeed and which ones fail.
They can't block everything, though. Senate Democrats can keep approving President Joe Biden's nominees to the federal judiciary even without any Republican colleagues' support, for example, because those nominations can advance with just 51 votes.
When McConnell lost the majority leadership, University of Kentucky political science professor Stephen Voss said that didn't put the commonwealth in danger of seeing a big drop in federal assistance.
Kentucky generally receives a disproportionate share of federal dollars compared with other states partly because of its significant poverty levels, Voss said. Plus, McConnell remains one of Congress' top four leaders.
In fact, McConnell noted in a January 2021 interview that he'd "still be one of the Big Four," saying: "When you end up in a big negotiation at the end of the year, each of the four of us have a veto power over what goes in and what doesn't."
Mr. Trump has been blamed for his party's worse-than-expected showing on November 8 after he endorsed hundreds of extremist candidates who proved unpalatable.
They included many "election deniers" who were pushing his false claims that an elaborate, nationwide conspiracy was to blame for his defeat to Joe Biden in 2020.
"It's Mitch McConnell's fault," Mr. Trump wrote on his Truth Social platform, which is very similar to Twitter but with far fewer users.
He said "everyone despises" the senior Republican senator and used what Chinese Americans consider a racist slur against his Taiwan-born wife, Elaine Chao.