Tags: mitch mcconnell | senate | gop | serving

Sen. McConnell Passes Sen. Dole as Longest Serving GOP Leader 

Sen. McConnell Passes Sen. Dole as Longest Serving GOP Leader 

By    |   Tuesday, 12 June 2018 10:08 AM

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on Tuesday passed former Sen. Bob Dole as the longest-serving Republican leader in the Senate's history, at 11 years, five months and 10 days, according to Roll Call.

Although the Kentucky senator has not been the most popular among GOP faithful, it is difficult to question his effectiveness at leading his conference with the narrowest of margins.

McConnell became Senate Republican leader on Jan. 3, 2007, after the GOP lost control of both chambers of Congress, and Tuesday marks his 4,179th day in the position, according to the Senate Historical Office, The Hill reported.

McConnell helped his party bounce back from a disastrous defeat in the 2008 elections to regain control of the White House, Senate, House and 33 governorships.

Former aides and supporters of McConnell say he helped rekindle the GOP's fighting spirit when the party was down and that he does not always get the respect he deserves, especially from Republican grass-roots conservatives to whom he is often a target of derision.

"What sticks out to me is the difference in where the Republican Party as a whole is from the time he started that job until now," Josh Holmes, McConnell's former chief of staff, told The Hill.

His tenure has included keeping a steady hand on the GOP through two political revolutions within the Republican Party: the emergence of the Tea Party in 2009 and the election of President Donald Trump in 2016.

Democratic critics, however, say that the hardball tactics McConnell used to bring Republicans together and thwart former President Barack Obama's agenda contributed to a souring of bipartisan relations that has harmed the nation as a whole.

Jim Manley, a longtime Senate aide and former spokesman for former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, said McConnell has been a much more partisan leader than Dole, who "believed in the art of compromise and was more than willing to reach across the aisle to work with Democrats."

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Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on Tuesday passed former Sen. Bob Dole as the longest-serving Republican leader in the Senate's history.
mitch mcconnell, senate, gop, serving
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2018-08-12
Tuesday, 12 June 2018 10:08 AM
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