McConnell: Time for 'a new direction'

Sen. Mitch McConnellMitch McConnellHomeland Security chief says 21 states have sought cybersecurity assistance 9/11 bill is a global blunder that will weaken US efforts abroad States urged to bolster election security MORE (R-Ky.) vowed to set Congress in a "new direction" during his victory speech on Tuesday night.

McConnell is projected to defeat his Democratic challenger Alison Lundergan Grimes handily. He would become the Senate majority leader should his party net the six seats it needs in the rest of Tuesday’s races.

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As McConnell spoke, the GOP was projected to win the first two of the truly competitive Senate fights, with multiple networks calling victories for Rep. Tom Cotton (R) over incumbent Sen. Mark Pryor (D) in Arkansas, and for Shelley Moore Capito (R) in the seat being vacated by Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D) in West Virginia.

"This experiment in big government has lasted long enough. It's time to go in a new direction," McConnell said. "It's time to turn this country around. And I will not let you down."

McConnell did not mention specifically that he is likely to become the next majority leader, but he alluded to it throughout the speech. He said that he hopes to find ways to work with President Obama.

"I don't expect the president to wake up tomorrow and view the world differently. ... He knows I won't either," McConnell said. "We do have an obligation to work together."

Still, McConnell did not mute his criticisms of the Obama administration.

"For too long this administration has tried to tell the American people what's good for them and then blame somebody else when those policies didn't work out," McConnell said. "Tonight, Kentuckians rejected that approach. Tonight, Kentuckians said, 'We can do better than that as a nation.' Tonight they said, 'We can have real change in Washington.' And that's just what I intend to deliver."

McConnell added that lawmakers in Washington have "forgotten that their job is to serve."

"So tomorrow, the papers will say that I won this race. But the truth is, tonight we begin another one, one that's far more important than mine," McConnell said, "and that's the race to turn this country around, to restore hope and confidence and optimism across this Commonwealth and nation of ours."