Wicker will lead Senate Republican campaign committee
© Greg Nash

Sen. Roger WickerRoger Frederick WickerTrump judicial picks face rare GOP opposition Hillicon Valley: Zuckerberg to meet with lawmakers | Big tech defends efforts against online extremism | Trump attends secretive Silicon Valley fundraiser | Omar urges Twitter to take action against Trump tweet Tech giants defend efforts against extremist content MORE (R) of Mississippi has been elected as the new chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee. 

The Mississippi senator defeated Sen. Dean HellerDean Arthur HellerThis week: Barr back in hot seat over Mueller report Trump suggests Heller lost reelection bid because he was 'hostile' during 2016 presidential campaign Trump picks ex-oil lobbyist David Bernhardt for Interior secretary MORE (R) of Nevada during Republican leadership elections Thursday morning.


“I am thankful for the confidence and the support of my colleagues. I intend to roll up my sleeves immediately to ensure that we have the resources available to preserve our Republican majority. This Senate Republican leadership team is ready to go to bat for the American people, and I am proud to be a part of it," Wicker said in a statement.  

With his election, Wicker becomes the sixth-ranking member of the Senate GOP leadership. 

He will take over for Sen. Jerry MoranGerald (Jerry) MoranPompeo pressed on possible Senate run by Kansas media Jerry Moran: 'I wouldn't be surprised' if Pompeo ran for Senate in Kansas Senators introduce bill aimed at protecting Olympic athletes in response to abuse scandals MORE (R-Kan.), who helped the party pick up at least eight Democratic seats and possibly nine, if Sen. Mary LandrieuMary Loretta LandrieuCongress needs to work to combat the poverty, abuse and neglect issues that children face Dems wrestle over how to vote on ‘Green New Deal’ Lobbying world MORE (D-La.) loses her runoff election next month.

The map is much more difficult for Republicans in 2016, when 24 GOP seats and only 10 Democratic seats will be up for reelection.

Some GOP insiders thought Heller would win the race, after he pledged to target home-state colleague, Senate Democratic Leader Harry ReidHarry Mason ReidBarr fails to persuade Cruz on expanded background checks Harry Reid warns Trump 'can be reelected' Homeland Security Republican accuses Navy of withholding UFO info MORE (D-Nev.), for defeat in the next election cycle.

Heller has urged Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval (R) to run against Reid in two years.