Mitch McConnell Beats Rick Scott in Republican Leadership Fight

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Mitch McConnell Beats Rick Scott in Republican Leadership Fight

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  • Mitch McConnell of Kentucky was reelected overwhelmingly as his party’s
    Senate leader on Wednesday, holding
    off Senator Rick Scott of Florida in the
    first challenge Mr. McConnell has faced
    since assuming the post in 2007.
    Though Mr. McConnell won
    convincingly, the contest exposed a
    divide over strategy among Senate
    Republicans that is likely to complicate
    their attempts to counter the
    Democratic majority over the next two
    Meeting behind closed doors for more
    than three hours, Republican senators
    sat at desks in the Old Senate Chamber,
    a semicircular room adorned with
    marble columns and an ornate central
    table hung with crimson fabric, to hash
    out their differences and vote. In a final
    tally of 37-10, with one person voting
    present, Mr. McConnell easily defeated
    Mr. Scott.

    Mr. Scott, who led the party’s
    unsuccessful campaign effort to reclaim
    the majority, portrayed Mr. McConnell
    as the face of the status quo. Many
    Senate Republicans instead held Mr.
    Scott responsible for the poor midterm
    Mr. McConnell, who months ago raised
    “candidate quality'” as a problem for his
    party in the midterms, said the
    Republican losses signaled a badly
    damaged party brand that had
    alienated crucial voting groups
    “We underperformed among
    independents and moderates because
    their impression of many of the people
    in our party in leadership roles is that
    there’s chaos, negativity, excessive
    attacks and it frightened
    independent and moderate Republican
    voters,” Mr. McConnell told reporters
    on Tuesday, saying he welcomed the
    challenge from Mr. Scott.
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    Mitch McTurtle

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