Chuck Schumer is Actively Recruiting a McConnell Challenger | NTK Network Chuck Schumer is Actively Recruiting a McConnell Challenger

Chuck Schumer is Actively Recruiting a McConnell Challenger

It’s a “calculated act of aggression” and an “unmistakable act of hostility,” per Politico.

By NTK Staff | 02.13.2019 @11:00am
Chuck Schumer is Actively Recruiting a McConnell Challenger

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) is actively recruiting a Democratic candidate to challenge his GOP counterpart, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), according to a new report from Politico.

Schumer met with Amy McGrath, who lost a congressional contest in 2018 when so many other Democratic candidates found success. McGrath, a former Marine, first spoke to Schumer in December and then met with him and Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee Chairwoman Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV) in January.

Schumer’s active involvement in recruiting a challenger to take on McConnell is not unprecedented, but it is notable. Politico’s Alex Isenstadt described it as both “a calculated act of aggression” and “an unmistakable act of hostility” at separate times in his story.

Despite much hype and national attention, McConnell easily dispatched with his 2014 challenger, Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes, by about 15 percentage points. It’s not yet clear if McGrath will indeed run, but if she does, McConnell’s team indicated they are more than ready.

McConnell’s team has been preparing for months. Last year, the campaign tapped its first two officials, Shane Noem and Jonathan Shell.

McConnell aides have also examined McGrath’s unsuccessful 2018 bid, when GOP Rep. Andy Barr cast her as too liberal for the central Kentucky district. Aides to the Republican leader view the contest as a template for how to defeat her in 2020.

McConnell had $4 million in the bank at the start of the year, and a super PAC that helped boost his 2014 win is planning on playing a role again in 2020. Despite Schumer’s efforts, McConnell’s Kentucky expertise, cash on hand, and structural advantages will undoubtedly give him a leg up on any would-be challenger.

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