High-profile Democratic challengers for Senate Republicans are in fact passing on Senate runs, leaving Mitch McConnell free and clear to block any and every cabinet, agency, and federal judge nominee in 2021 of a Democratic president, and I'm disappointed across the board. Stacey Abrams doesn't want anything to do with David Perdue's seat in Georgia,and now both Beto O'Rourke and Julian Castro are bailing on John Cornyn's seat in Texas, with O'Rourke running for President instead.
All this means Democrats are in serious trouble in the Senate in 2020.
Senate Democrats' bid to take back the majority is running into a big roadblock: Some of their most coveted recruiting targets are refusing to run.
After straining to defend seats in bright-red states in 2018, Democrats are focused on picking off Republicans to claim the Senate majority in 2020. But, so far, a number of the party’s high-profile recruits have said no to Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and the party’s campaign arm.
Stacey Abrams, a rising star in the party after nearly winning the Georgia governor’s race last year, passed on a Senate run Tuesday despite a sustained and public recruitment that included multiple meetings with Schumer. Hours later, Rep. Cindy Axne, who flipped a swing district last year, confirmed she was running for the House again — and not challenging Iowa's first-term Republican senator, Joni Ernst.
Democrats haven’t struck out everywhere: Former astronaut Mark Kelly in Arizona was a huge get in a critical battleground state. But three Democrats in other key states have passed on Senate bids to run for president despite the crowded field, and the party has missed out on its top recruits in Georgia and North Carolina.
“The Senate is not an appealing place for smart, talented candidates because it’s a broken institution. And Democrats have not yet offered a vision for how to fix it, aside from wringing their hands and wishing things were different,” said Adam Jentleson, a longtime aide to former Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.). “What’s the pitch? 'Come here, do nothing and let Mitch McConnell eat your lunch every day?'”
Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto of Nevada, chairwoman of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, denied she and Schumer had blown it. Democrats need to flip only a handful of seats, and they'll be in a position to get them, she said.
“We don’t need all of these states to take back the majority. We just need three or four. And we’re going to do really well,” Cortez Masto said. “Just because we don’t get somebody that you’re aware of doesn’t mean we’re not going to have somebody that can beat those Republican incumbents.”
Schumer declined to say whether Abrams’ decision was a personal rejection of him but said the party will find a strong candidate to take on freshman Sen. David Perdue.
“We’re going to win in Georgia. And we have lots of good candidates in many different states, including Georgia,” Schumer said.
At this point Chuck Schumer and Catherine Cortez Masto are one for six with Commander Kelly running in Arizona against Martha McSally. If Dems don't win back the Senate, I guarantee you McConnell will block everything. Nothing the new Democratic president wants to do will get done. It won't get passed. It won't get a vote. Mitch will block it, period.
And Democrats don't seem to give a damn.