McConnell: GOP Must Erect Broad Tent

Friday, 17 Sep 2010 11:53 AM

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Republicans must welcome candidates of all ideological persuasions to regain control of Congress, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell tells Roll Call. With Republican candidates ranging from moderates who could pass for Democrats to tea party-backed candidates who have fought the GOP establishment, the Kentucky Republican’s point carries a lot of merit.

Republicans, Mitch, McConnell, broad-tent, candidates“I decided at the beginning of this Congress that the single most important thing I could do would be to help us improve our numbers,” he said.

“I rarely quote Adlai Stevenson for many things. But it was in fact Adlai Stevenson who said: ‘Before you can make policy, you’ve got to win elections.’ And we were sitting there with 40, and then subsequently 41, which is right on the cusp of being irrelevant.”

McConnell sees conservative legend William Buckley as his role model in this. “I agree with William F. Buckley, in that I’m always for the most conservative candidate who can win,” McConnell said. “It’s a statement of the obvious that winning in Maine is different than winning in South Carolina — it just is. And I think it’s important to have a national party that can win in every part of America.”





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