Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
February 9, 2016

McConnell Declines NRSC Intervention for Re-Election

Moran is a Kansas Republican and NRSC Chairman. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

With Republicans eyeing the Senate majority and his own job title poised to change, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has told the National Republican Senatorial Committee not to worry about his race.

In a briefing with reporters Thursday at the committee headquarters, NRSC Chairman Jerry Moran said McConnell is raising money for the committee as it seeks to add at least six Republican senators and retake control of the chamber — but the NRSC is “not actively engaged in Kentucky.”

McConnell is running in a tight race against Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes, who’s one of the top fundraisers of the cycle and whose candidacy has already been assisted by Democrat-aligned outside groups. Still, Moran said he’s confident McConnell will win based on his experience, influence and the state’s Republican lean.

“We are not contributing to his race in Kentucky at his request,” Moran, a Kansan, said. “So, what is going to transpire in Kentucky is going to be determined by Sen. McConnell and his campaign team.”

McConnell does have the help of well-financed, Kentucky-based outside groups focused solely on his race, but he’s not accepting help from the official committee.

Reached for comment, McConnell senior adviser Josh Holmes said as the leader, McConnell doesn’t want to drain the committee’s resources, despite being involved in what may be the most expensive race of the cycle. Holmes noted McConnell made the same pledge in 2008.

“He’s hosted and attended dozens of events for the NRSC this cycle and has contributed directly from his campaign and leadership PAC,” Holmes said in an email. “Essentially, his take is that he carries his own weight so that the Committee can maximize it’s resources in pursuit of the majority.”

At the briefing, Moran reiterated remarks he made earlier this week to CQ Roll Call that Republicans have put about a dozen seats in play. He said Democrats’ ability to raise significant amounts of money — both their campaigns and the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee — is one of the challenges he sees in their pursuit.

  • Militaryboy

    Sure, McConnell doesn’t need the NRCC money — yet, but when the Koch Brothers et al are throwing $65 million in outside PAC $ into Kentucky, who needs it more? When he does take NRCC money in late October you’ll know that Grimes is ready to make an upset. If it can happen to Eric Cantor (albeit in a GOP primary), the political world is turning upside down for tired, ol’ politicians.

    Oh, any talk of 12 Senate seats in play is like Dick Morris and Karl Rove predicting, “Romney in a Landslide!” Pure bravado in face of turning fortunes surrounding their Impeachment talk. If they win the Senate, the first thing they will do is bring up Impeachment…


    The Republicans have been nothing but a severe disappointment to the American people. This is especially true for the more than three million unemployed families whom they denied an extension of benefits, since late last December. They have effectively forced millions of families into financial ruin and deep poverty. They have shown by their actions a true disdain and contempt for the poor in this country. They have voted against every bill that would benefit the unemployed, women, gays, and minorities in our country. They have prevented any positive change to take place by this president. They have thrown their fellow Americans under the bus, for their own selfish political agenda. They have aligned themselves with corporate America, and special interest groups, with deep pockets. They have proven clearly who they truly represent, and it’s not you or me.

  • ltinny

    True, but still the races are tight. That in itself is a disappointment. After all the obstruction/destruction, who exactly are the people voting for them?

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