Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell reportedly blamed former President Trump on Tuesday for the so-called “candidate quality” challenges he believes bedeviled his party during the midterm elections.
McConnell explained his belief that his party was disadvantaged by poor candidates in multiple crucial states to reporters a week after Republicans lost the Senate runoff in Georgia.
An outcome which extended the Senate Democratic majority to 51 members.
McConnell noted that his affiliated super PAC, the Senate Leadership Fund, intervened in two primaries in Alabama and Missouri.
However he argued that Senate GOP leaders had little power to intervene in races where Trump endorsed MAGA-style candidates or Republicans who claimed the 2020 election was stolen.
“Our ability to control primary outcomes was quite limited in ’22 because the support of the former president proved to be very decisive in these primaries so my view was do the best with the cards you’re dealt,” he said.
“Hopefully in the next cycle, we’ll have quality candidates everywhere and a better outcome,” he continued.
The Senate Leadership Fund spent more than $4 million against Rep. Mo Brooks (R-Ala.) in the Alabama Senate GOP primary and more than $6 million in the super PAC Show Me Values to prevent Eric Greitens from obtaining the Missouri Senate GOP nomination.
McConnell said that some Republicans had forgotten the lessons of the 2010 and 2012 elections, when the GOP blew solid chances to win races in several key states because controversial Republican candidates won the primaries in those years.