WATCH: GOP senator says 51-vote margin easier to manage for McConnell 

Senior GOP Sen. Richard BurrRichard Mauze BurrHillicon Valley: Subpoenas for Facebook, Google and Twitter on the cards | Wray rebuffs mail-in voting conspiracies | Reps. raise mass surveillance concerns Bipartisan representatives demand answers on expired surveillance programs Rep. Mark Walker says he's been contacted about Liberty University vacancy MORE (N.C.) tells The Hill that losing one Republican vote in the upper chamber may result in a margin that’s easier for Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) to manage. 

“I’m not sure that Mitch is presented with anything different than having a 52-vote margin. A 51-vote margin might actually be easier to manage than a 52 vote,” Burr said in an interview when asked if McConnell would be appealing to incoming Democratic Alabama Sen. Doug Jones for a vote on tax reform. 

“Hopefully, we've got tax reform done long before the certification of the Alabama outcome,” Burr added. 

ADVERTISEMENT

Jones on Tuesday defeated Republican Roy Moore, who was plagued by accusations of sexual misconduct, to become the first Democrat sent to the Senate from Alabama in a quarter century.

Alabama’s senior GOP senator, Richard ShelbyRichard Craig ShelbyThe Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by Facebook - Republicans lawmakers rebuke Trump on election Senate to push funding bill vote up against shutdown deadline Senate GOP eyes early exit MORE, warns that Jones won’t be persuaded to vote for Republican measures.  

“Oh no, no, no, no, no. He’s a Democrat; he will be voting with the Democrats, he ran as a Democrat,” Shelby responded when asked if Jones would support conservative bills.  

Shelby dismissed the notion that the incoming senator would act as a conservative Democrat similar to the House Democratic “Blue Dog” coalition. 

Shaking his head, Shelby said, “I wouldn’t think so … I’ve known Doug Jones … he’s a staunch Democrat.” 

Burr called the special election in Alabama a “great interim show,” and said 2018 should be a concern to Democrats. 

“In ’18, one-third of the Senate is up and the majority of the senators that are up come from states that Donald Trump won and in some cases won pretty handily. I think Democrats are much more concerned with the outcome of the ‘18 elections then they are the outcome of a special election."

Watch the video above to hear the senators in their own words.