Florida Senator Rick Scott’s attempts to use the NRSC to “build his own national brand” to serve his White House ambitions are failing as he simultaneously fails to win over MAGA supporters and runs into trouble with GOP leadership. The result is the head of Senate Republicans’ campaign arm falling flat and continuing to struggle to navigate the political dynamics of the election cycle because — as always — he’s focused on his own self-serving political interests.
POLITICO reports that despite years of courting former President Donald Trump’s most loyal voters, Scott “gets no love from the MAGA-verse” as “his well-known lack of charisma” and “early stumbles” undermine his strained pitch. Trump’s top pollster called Scott out for “trying to please two masters” and dismissed his early conflicting positions as “confusing.” When taking over as NRSC Chair, Scott reportedly “fired a handful of top staffers and replaced them with his own longtime aides… without informing Senate leadership.” As one Florida Republican consultant explained, Scott’s “failure to get traction with Trump voters and scuffles with the GOP’s more establishment could leave him somewhat politically rudderless” headed into 2022.
New reporting from The Hill highlights how Scott “has found himself squeezed between opposing factions of the GOP,” a tricky spot that threatens to “deal damage” to Republican efforts to win Senate races. Scott’s presidential ambitions mean that the NRSC Chair is afraid of “running afoul of Trump” while having to navigate the “frayed relationship” between the former president and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. As one GOP operative who’s worked on Senate races said: “You can’t paper over the fact that, at some point, it’s going to be Rick Scott, the NRSC chair, vs. Donald Trump.”
The New York Times dispatch from CPAC underscored Scott’s failed attempts to energize support for his 2024 aspirations. Despite his efforts to mimic Trump’s style and being on home turf in Florida, Scott “appeared to gain little traction” as his applause lines bombed and “most people… simply strained to remember him.”
Take a look at the latest brutal reporting detailing Rick Scott’s struggles:
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