Mitch McConnell announces his exit as Senate GOP leader

Source: Politico | February 28, 2024 | Burgess Everett

He plans to not seek another term after the longest Republican leadership stint in chamber history.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell announced on Wednesday that he will not run for another term as leader, ending a record-setting run atop the GOP conference.

The Kentucky Republican has served as party leader since 2007, the longest stint in Senate history. He indicated that he plans to serve out the rest of his Senate term, which expires in 2026.

“I’m no longer the young man sitting in the back hoping colleagues would remember my name. It’s time for the next generation of leadership,” McConnell said.

McConnell announced his intentions at an incredibly tense time for both himself and his party: He’s trying to send billions of dollars more to Ukraine to fend off Russia and is confronting the likelihood that his party nominates former President Donald Trump, whom McConnell has not spoken to for years. On Tuesday alone, he faced three tough moments: nudging Speaker Mike Johnson to pass the Senate’s $95 billion foreign aid bill, dodging a question about when he would endorse Trump and committing to avoiding a government shutdown.

“Believe me, I know the politics within my party at this particular moment in time. I have many faults. Misunderstanding politics is not one of them,” McConnell said — an acknowledgment of his party’s huge divisions over foreign policy and Trump.


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