Trump-McConnell Tension “Has Made Life Difficult” For NRSC Chair Rick Scott

New reporting from The Hill details how the growing “tension between Trump and McConnell has made life difficult for” NRSC Chair Rick Scott as he tries to navigate the nasty rift between the Minority Leader and the former president. Scott is dealing with a brutal civil war destabilizing the party in Senate battlegrounds as he tries to calculate how to appease increasingly unpopular Senate GOP leadership while placating the party’s Trump-aligned base in 2022.

According to CNBC, Scott “has told associates that he wants to persuade McConnell to engage with Trump in order for the two to settle their differences.” But McConnell has not spoken with Trump since December 14th, and people close to the Minority Leader say he “does not plan to ever speak with [Trump] again.”

And POLITICO reports today that Trump himself is now gearing up “for war with his own party” and “will soon begin vetting candidates at Mar-a-Lago… to ensure every open GOP seat in the 2022 midterms has a MAGA-approved contender vying for it.”

“With the GOP bitterly divided between McConnell’s toxic Washington politics and Trump’s unhinged conspiracy theories, the challenges for Senate Republicans are only going to get more difficult,” said DSCC spokesperson Stewart Boss. “Rick Scott’s brief tenure as NRSC chair is already plagued by battleground retirements and emerging primary headaches, and it will get worse as these Republican factions begin to go to war with each other in the coming months.”


The Hill: GOP: McConnell-Trump civil war will hurt Republicans

  • Republicans are worried that the battle between former President Trump and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) could torpedo their efforts to win back majorities in the House and Senate in 2022.
  • Republicans fear they could fumble those opportunities away amid the nasty feud that has broken out between Trump and McConnell over the future of the party.
  • The split could depress fundraising, dampen turnout, alienate swing voters and push bad general election candidates through divided primary fields, Republicans say.
  • There are scores of unanswered questions around Trump’s involvement in 2022, including whether he’ll fundraise for Senate Republicans and how aggressively he’ll back primary challengers.
  • But if the battle continues to escalate, they say McConnell has met an opponent in Trump who has the full support of a majority of Republicans and a fundraising operation to match.
  • The tension between Trump and McConnell has made life difficult for Sen. Rick Scott (Fla.), who is running the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) this cycle.
  • McConnell is deeply involved at the NRSC but Scott is close with Trump.

CNBC: Trump rages at top Republicans even as advisors urge him to focus attacks on Biden, Democrats

  • Sen. Rick Scott, chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, has told associates that he wants to persuade McConnell to engage with Trump in order for the two to settle their differences ahead of the midterms, according to one GOP advisor.
  • Chris Hartline, a spokesman for the NRSC, told CNBC that Scott is “not involved in mediating anything…”
  • “I don’t know if he’s spoken to the Leader recently but we don’t talk about private conversations he had with other Senators,” Hartline added.
  • Representatives for McConnell and Scott did not respond to requests for comment.

POLITICO: Trump gears up for war with his own party

  • According to three people familiar with the planning, Trump will soon begin vetting candidates at Mar-a-Lago who are eager to fulfill his promise to exact vengeance upon incumbent Republicans who’ve scorned him, and to ensure every open GOP seat in the 2022 midterms has a MAGA-approved contender vying for it.
  • Trump already has received dozens of requests from prospective candidates seeking to introduce themselves and nab his endorsement, and formal meetings with them could begin as early as March.
  • Now that Trump has survived his second Senate impeachment trial, he has shifted his focus to post-presidential activism — a venture mostly bankrolled by his new leadership PAC, Save America, which had $31 million in its coffers at the start of this month.


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