On Thursday (March 9), the day after Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY.) was hospitalized after falling at an event, Senate Republicans found themselves shaken and disorientated, raising questions about the GOP’s future leadership.
In January, McConnell became the longest-serving party leader in Senate history. Since taking on the role in 2005, he has helped the GOP navigate some of the most significant moments in recent history.
He was at the helm during the 2008 financial crisis, and the U.S. Government’s near default in 2011.
He also helped the GOP navigate the 2012 fiscal cliff and former President Donald Trump’s two impeachment trials.
On Wednesday evening, at the conclusion of an attending an event for the Senate Leadership Fund, McConnell fell at the Waldorf Astoria in Washington, D.C., requiring him to be taken to hospital by ambulance where he was treated for a concussion.
McConnell’s absence came a day after Republicans secured a victory by getting Democrats to support a resolution that would reverse a District of Columbia crime bill.
Speaking on a condition of anonymity, one GOP Senator shared the impact of McConnell’s absence on the GOP Conference, saying that the 81-year-old Republican could “lead a very diverse group of individuals” in a “masterful” way.
The Senator added that there is concern about who could be the next leader of the Senate GOP and the type of person that would replace him.
Presently, there are three possible replacements for McCarthy, including Senate GOP Whip John Thune (S.D.), Senate GOP Conference Chairman John Barrasso (Wyo.), and former Senate GOP Whip John Corryn (Texas).