- The Washington Times - Monday, November 7, 2022

Sen. Rick Scott of Florida isn’t saying whether he plans to run for majority leader if the GOP takes over the Senate in the midterm elections.

Mr. Scott, a Republican, ducked the question Sunday when asked if he planned to challenge Republican leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky.

“I’m not focused on anything except getting a majority Tuesday night,” Mr. Scott said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” “Everybody wants to ask me about a bunch of things that going to happen.”

“That’s a non-answer,” NBC host Chuck Todd said.

“My whole focus is Tuesday night,” Mr. Scott said.

Mr. Scott is the chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, so he is quarterbacking efforts to retake control of the evenly divided Senate.

SEE ALSO: Rick Scott on future of safety net programs: ‘We have got to start being honest with the public’

Lingering in the background is a simmering feud with Mr. McConnell, who earlier this year said it might be hard to retake the majority because of the lack of quality GOP nominees.

Mr. Scott wrote an op-ed for The Washington Examiner that said criticizing nominees showed “contempt” for voters who selected them in primaries. Republican candidates have surged of late in places such as Pennsylvania, Georgia and New Hampshire, making a GOP takeover more likely than previously thought.

Mr. McConnell, a longtime party leader known for keeping his conference in line, also distanced himself from a Scott-authored plan that would require more Americans to pay some income tax and sunset all federal laws after five years.

Democrats pounced on the latter provision as an attempt to pull back on Medicare and Social Security benefits — a sensitive topic that impacts seniors, who are reliable voters.

“We will not have as part of our agenda a bill that raises taxes on half the American people and sunsets Social Security and Medicare within five years,” Mr. McConnell said earlier this year.

• Tom Howell Jr. can be reached at thowell@washingtontimes.com.

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