McConnell: I didn’t think Trump ‘had a chance’

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellOn The Money: Biden, Senate GOP take step toward infrastructure deal as other plans hit speed bumps Senate GOP to give Biden infrastructure counteroffer next week Masks shed at White House; McConnell: 'Free at last' MORE (R-Ky.) says he never expected Donald Trump to win the presidential election.

"I didn’t think President TrumpDonald TrumpProject Veritas surveilled government officials to expose anti-Trump sentiments: report Cheney: Fox News has 'a particular obligation' to refute election fraud claims The Memo: What now for anti-Trump Republicans? MORE had a chance at winning,” McConnell said on Kentucky Education Television’s “One to One” late Monday. "It never occurred to me that he might be able to win."

McConnell said Trump found a way of reaching voters who felt ignored by Democratic rival Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonHillary Clinton to speak at Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders summit More than half of eligible Latinos voted in 2020, setting record Fox News signs Trey Gowdy, Dan Bongino for new shows MORE, President Obama and other Democrats.


“I think that there was a lot of feeling among just ordinary people all across the country that the current administration didn’t care about them,” he said.

“Trump was able to convey — oddly enough, a message from a billionaire who lives in Manhattan — a genuine concern for people who feel kind of left out, are sort of offended by all the political correctness they see around them and didn’t feel like this is the America that they’re accustomed to.”

McConnell added that he was most impressed by Trump’s wins in the typically blue Midwestern states of Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin.

“What was amazing about Trump’s victory is that he pierced the ‘blue wall’ that I haven’t seen a Republican carry in a long time. He was able to break through and that’s why he won a comfortable Electoral College victory. Hillary Clinton won the popular vote.”

McConnell also said during the interview that he thought that Republicans "would come up short" in their bid to hold the Senate. 

"It was really exciting because you get more excited about things you don’t expect to occur.”