Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s dream of retaking Senate control in 2022 could be slipping away as a growing number of Republicans in the upper chamber are retiring, clearing the way for more Trumpian, less electable candidates to run for office.
According to Axios, “While the midterm elections are supposed to be a boon to the party out of power, the recent run of retirements — which may not be over — is upending that assumption for the GOP in 2022.”
The slew of retirements will likely encourage MAGA extremists to run for the open seats, which could increase the odds of Democrats maintaining or expanding their control of the Senate.
More from Axios:
Sen. Roy Blunt’s retirement highlights the twin challenge facing Senate Republicans: finding good replacement candidates and avoiding a pathway for potential troublemakers to join their ranks.
People with sharp rhetoric and outlandish style who see themselves as Trumpian figures — similar to Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene and Lauren Boebert in the House — may be attracted to the Republican Senate races.
Even more GOP retirements could be coming
As of right now, five Republican senators have announced their retirements – Roy Blunt of Missouri, Rob Portman of Ohio, Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania, Richard Burr of North Carolina and Richard Shelby of Alabama – but more could be on the way.
As Axios pointed out on Monday, Sens. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Ron Johnson (R-WI) are also reportedly considering leaving the Senate. While Iowa isn’t the battleground it once was, Wisconsin is certainly a pick-up opportunity for Democrats.
It’s no surprise that the Republican Party – wholly owned by a disgraced former president who lost reelection by 7 million votes – is working overtime to make it harder for the American people to vote.
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Sean Colarossi currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and was an organizing fellow for both of President Obama’s presidential campaigns. He also worked with Planned Parenthood as an Affordable Care Act Outreach Organizer in 2014, helping northeast Ohio residents obtain health insurance coverage.