A quick look at the Republicans leadership fight

Many prominent conservatives (along with elected officials) are pushing for a delay in congressional leadership elections, which are scheduled for Tuesday in the House, and Wednesday in the Senate. To me, this raises several issues, some of them contradictory.

It’s absurd to rush through leadership elections when control of the House isn’t even clear and the Georgia Senate run-off still hasn’t been decided.

Given the disastrous underperformance of Republicans this year, it’s perfectly fair to question whether the party needs new leadership.

Many if not most conservatives calling for new leadership are people who want to push the party in a more MAGA/Trumpy direction, even though the biggest factor in the 2022 debacle was Donald Trump pushing candidates in the primaries based solely on their loyalty to him rather than objective merits.

In the House, Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy has done nothing to indicate he’s capable of steering the party in a more normal direction — from his voting against certification of electoral votes, to his years of coddling Trump. He is likely to be outmaneuvered by Nancy Pelosi whether Republicans are narrowly in the majority or narrowly in the minority.

Mitch McConnell has delivered a lot more for Republicans over the years than McCarthy. Were it not for him, not as many conservative judges would have been confirmed and Democrats would have accomplished more when in power.  He also did the right thing when it counted on January 6. That said, leading the Senate Republicans is not a lifetime position. McConnell is 80 years old and at some point in the near future, the party is going to have to figure out a succession plan.

Whoever wins the leadership roles, they aren’t going to have much of any power in the next two years. Republicans will be in the minority in the Senate, and in the House, even if they end up eking it out, their margin will be so small that the GOP leader will practically have to be asking Marjorie Taylor Greene for permission to be able to take a bathroom break. So really, this leadership fight is setting things up for Republicans next chance to retake full control of Washington in 2024.

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