March 27th, 2009
02:40 PM ET
11 years ago

Senate GOP plots comeback

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/03/27/art.getty.mitch.mcconnell.jpg caption=" Sen. Mitch McConnell also said he doesn't mind the 'party of no' label congressional Democrats and the White House try to pin on Republican."]WASHINGTON (CNN) - Despite crushing defeats in the last two elections, Senate Republicans have new "energy and enthusiasm" aimed at winning back the majority, says their leader, Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky.

Why the turnaround?

"President Bush had become extremely unpopular, and politically he was sort of a millstone around our necks in both '06 and '08," McConnell said in a roundtable with reporters Friday. "We now have the opportunity to be on offense, offer our own ideas and we will win some."

Many of those ideas get presented as amendments to Democratic bills which, though usually defeated, can still draw attention to GOP policy alternatives and often force Democrats to take difficult votes.

"They become the way you chart the course for a comeback," McConnell said. "Which in this country, always happens at some point."

"The pendulum swings," he said.

Interestingly, McConnell said many of the clever ideas for amendments come from conservative think tanks and other Republican thinkers off Capitol Hill.

"Newt Gingrich, for example, has an idea a minute. Many of those are quite good. Many of those become amendments," he said.

McConnell also said he doesn't mind the "party of no" label congressional Democrats and the White House try to pin on Republicans.

"I don't feel anyone should be apologetic for opposing a bad idea," McConnell said. "I'm not fearful of an effort to demonize dissent," he said.


Filed under: GOP • Mitch McConnell • Senate
soundoff (138 Responses)
  1. Tarpon

    Mitch McConnell, poster boy for enthusiasm and modern relevance. Good job.

    March 27, 2009 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  2. cranton

    lol. We know that. Now they can go away!

    March 27, 2009 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  3. The lonely Libertarian of Liverpool NY

    I for one will never trust the GOP again. They say they are advocates of smaller government, individual privacy and free enterprise. But they are the party that has grown the Government that has put the American taxpayers in trillion dollar debt. The party that spies on our e-mail, cell phones and the books we read. This is the party that wants to shove Christian values down everyone throats. This is the party that backs prohibition of responsible citizens forcing them to live a life like a criminal. This is the same party that wants to have more gun control.
    What they say and what they do are completely different things in the last forty years; I say never again will I trust this party to be a representative of my rights.

    March 27, 2009 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  4. Maryann Rose

    "We now have the opportunity to be on offense, offer our own ideas and we will win some."

    So, it's all about winning and losing – Dem vs. Repub

    Where do the American peoples' needs come into play?

    Never?

    March 27, 2009 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  5. chris

    When will they grow up? Thank GOD they are not in control anymore!

    March 27, 2009 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  6. goodness, now they're thinking

    I thought I smelled something burning

    I think Palin should be in charge of it

    March 27, 2009 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  7. Accountability

    "Plot" is a good word to use when talking about Republicans.....

    March 27, 2009 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  8. BigDaddyTod

    You must have ideas for a comeback. Got "ZERO" Party (G0P) just does not do it in this day and age

    March 27, 2009 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  9. Joe in Austin

    Democrats have ideas even when a democrat is in the WH. Mitch, you should probably let someone else have your job.

    March 27, 2009 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  10. Obama Victim

    the key thing the Repub have going for them is Obummer.....a lot of people already regret voting for him......they will vote gainst the Dems in 2010...Repubs take at least one chamber and this loser will be out of luck

    March 27, 2009 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  11. Dieter Zerressen, Denver, CO

    Hey, try winning a new congressional seat in a contested district. These guys are plotting a comeback when they haven't even reached their all-time low yet. That's coming up in 2010!

    March 27, 2009 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  12. Ryanna

    New ideas ? Palin ? Steele ? Limbaugh ??? Good luck for a come back. You are history.

    March 27, 2009 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  13. President Obama Brings It!

    And the 2012 Campaign season begins. What the hell are they coming back from? Vacation? They've been on vacation for 8 years now. Let them stay on vacation, permanently. Nobody misses them. They are such a joke.

    March 27, 2009 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  14. MICK in MESA

    Boy is this man drinking the "goon juice" of the "NO! everything" party.
    The pendelum will swing back that's for sure – and it'll knock the current crop of plantation GOP obstructionists back into the 19th century where they belong...

    March 27, 2009 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  15. Richie

    They must eat their own first. I mean like these boys,
    Bush
    cheney,
    limbaugh
    Rove
    steele
    McConnell
    Eric cantor
    judd gregg-who is retiring

    And also show me what they are going to do for the country, not what the country should do for the party....

    March 27, 2009 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  16. Lynn

    So says the party who presented a budget with no numbers and now admits that their elected officials have no real ideas of their own.

    March 27, 2009 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  17. JonDie

    Which is why McConnell wants Obama to fail and the country to plunge into an even deeper depression. We Americans are mostly science-illiterate morons who can't understand math, science or cause and effect.

    March 27, 2009 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  18. david

    Indeed, why should McConnell fear an effort "to demonize dissent"? He and his party–and their president–excelled at demonizing dissent. What do they think the election was about?

    Delusional is a river in D.C.

    March 27, 2009 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  19. jason

    I can't wait for this! I need a good laugh right now.

    March 27, 2009 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  20. Shawn

    Uh-huh. The do-nothing party of NO ideas, NO vision, NO alternatives, NO values and NO leaders will be in the political wilderness for a long, long time.

    All they have is NO! NO! NO! and hyperbolic fearmongering; they are too extreme and rely exclusively on proven-dead-wrong ideology. They have painted themselves into a corner from which all they can do is cheer for America to fail.

    Good luck with that.

    March 27, 2009 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  21. Thomas Wier, Portland OR

    The worst possible scenario for America would be a GOP return to power. No thank you, McConnell.

    March 27, 2009 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  22. zazu

    Decent is one thing; saying "No" for sake of making life difficult is senseless and at times simply treasonous and obstructionist. People, intelligent ones, follow better ideas and alternatives not mere nay saying !

    March 27, 2009 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  23. sandy

    You better have a really good bag of tricks in order to make a comeback. Personally, McConnell has been in Washington too long.
    We need new blood in there. It's time we set term limits on some of these people.

    March 27, 2009 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  24. Linda

    The GOP are certainly big dreamers and only big dreamers.

    March 27, 2009 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  25. Independent chicago man age 25

    Well start having good idea, be a little bit more open minded, stop the mud slinging, help out others other then the weathly, have strong and smart people to head the party that will reach across party lines and then yes you may have a chance to come back around 2016 it's just to early right now for you so don't expect a fast recovery after Bush.

    March 27, 2009 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6