Rick Scott is back from Italy and offering reassuring words about the increasingly precarious Republican chances of taking back the Senate in November, putting himself at odds with Mitch McConnell.
Scott, the National Republican Senatorial Committee Chair, told a national audience Thursday that the Senate Minority Leader was wrong to believe there’s an even chance the Senate stays Democratic next year.
“No! We’ve got great candidates! Look at the background of these people. These are wonderful individuals that believe in this country, and they believe in the right things,” Scott said on the Fox News Channel’s “Hannity” program. “We are going to win, but we’ve got to raise our money. When we raise our money, we win.”
McConnell was less optimistic when he told an audience in Kentucky last week that the GOP had just a “50/50” chance of wresting Senate control back.
“Flipping the Senate, what are the chances? It’s a 50-50 proposition. We’ve got a 50-50 Senate right now. We’ve got a 50-50 nation. And I think the outcome is likely to be very, very close either way,” McConnell told the Scott County Chamber of Commerce, as reported by Reuters.
The schism between Scott and McConnell is documented at this point. They had a public split over Scott’s “12-point plan to rescue America.” McConnell slammed the plan’s suggestion of review of federal entitlement programs as a non-starter if he led Senate Republicans next year.
Former President Donald Trump has reportedly urged Scott to make a play for McConnell’s post. Scott has not endorsed McConnell to lead the caucus beyond this year.
Beyond the clapback to McConnell, Scott stayed upbeat as he extolled a series of Republican candidates facing tough battles, with special attention paid to Pennsylvania Republican Mehmet Oz, described by Scott as a “world-renowned surgeon” and the “best health care talk-show host in the world.”
“Oz, he’s raising money off you; if you want to help Mehmet Oz, text WIN to 55404,” Scott urged, telling the Hannity audience that the money would help the former television host “get his message out.”
Scott has been particularly sharp-elbowed in discussing the Pennsylvania race, condemning Fetterman for having “lied about his health” regarding his recovery from a stroke this year.
In the segment, Republicans like Sen. Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, Ted Budd of North Carolina, J.D. Vance of Ohio, and Herschel Walker of Georgia were each lionized as “running a great race.”
This article was first published at Florida Politics.