With establishment members under fire in both states–Flake has already stepped aside in Arizona, and Wicker is likely to face a brutal primary challenge in Mississippi with little chance of victory.
Over in Mississippi, state Sen. Chris McDaniel:
–from whom McConnell allies stole the 2014 GOP nomination for Senate when Chris McDaniel ran against Sen. Thad Cochran (R-MS) using underhanded tactics that backfired in 2016’s presidential primaries—is plotting a potential bid against Sen. Roger Wicker (R-MS). Chris McDaniel would be a formidable candidate against Wicker, and establishment forces close to McConnell in Washington, D.C., tell Breitbart News that the Senate Majority Leader is very worried about that race.
That then brings up Wyoming, where Blackwater founder Erik Prince is mulling a bid against incumbent Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY)—something that would likely be an easy win for Prince as Wyoming voters are some of the most conservative in the country. Then, of course, there is Nevada—where Danny Tarkanian is running against incumbent Sen. Dean Heller (R-NV) in a state Democrat Hillary Rodham Clinton won in 2016—causing even more worry for McConnell.
That’s not to mention other states like Missouri, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin, where voters and GOP forces are aligning against McConnell en masse. Not one Senate candidate in 2018 is openly supporting McConnell remaining Majority Leader, as even top National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) recruits like Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley, Ohio treasurer Josh Mandel, and Rep. Lou Barletta (R-PA) understand the toxicity McConnell brings upon the party.
In Wisconsin, the clear frontrunner businessman Kevin Nicholson—who is running far ahead of the establishment-backed state Sen. Leah Vukmir—has openly called for new leadership in the GOP-led Senate. Vukmir, who has fallen behind Nicholson, has rebuked calls from her own party’s voters for fresh leadership different than McConnell.
That all doesn’t even begin to get into the issues McConnell faces as two of his more senior members, Cochran in Mississippi and Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) in Arizona, have serious health issues that could imperil their long-term service prospects. With establishment members under fire in both states–Flake has already stepped aside, and Wicker is likely to face a brutal primary challenge with little chance of victory–that presents an opportunity for conservatives who want fresh, new GOP leadership other than McConnell in the U.S. Senate to flip four seats instead of just two.
If McConnell fails to pass tax cuts this year, he is likely to face an even more unforgiving electorate next year. But even if he does pass tax cuts, the voters across America are unlikely to give him any breaks at the polls when his allies face the fire and Republicans pushing for fresh leadership win in landslides.