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Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-KY, thinks that Republicans have a lukewarm chance of flipping the Senate in November, citing “candidate quality” as a factor.
The senator made the honest prediction at the Northern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce luncheon on Thursday afternoon.
“I think there’s probably a greater likelihood the House flips than the Senate,” the minority leader anticipated. “Senate races are just different, they’re statewide. Candidate quality has a lot to do with the outcome.”
“Right now, we have a 50-50 Senate and a 50-50 country, but I think when all is said and done this fall, we’re likely to have an extremely close Senate. Either our side up slightly or their side up slightly,” McConnell explained.
The Kentucky senator – who has led the Republican Party in the U.S. Senate since 2007 – has weathered midterm defeats in the past. The GOP failed to capture a Senate majority in 2010 and 2012 due to candidates like Todd Akin in Missouri and Christine O’Donnell in Delaware.
It remains to be seen how Senate elections will play out. While Republican J.D. Vance holds a 5-point lead over Democratic opponent Tim Ryan in Ohio according to a new Emerson College poll, the race remains tight.
The same survey says Ryan is ahead of Vance in favorability, receiving 54% over Vance’s 50%
Meanwhile, in Pennsylvania, analysts are predicting that lieutenant governor John Fetterman holds a stronger lead over Republican candidate Dr. Mehmet Oz. Cook Political Report says the Pennsylvania race has shifted from “toss-up” to “lean Democratic.”