NRSC chair Scott calls for party unity: ‘The Republican Civil War is now cancelled’
Sen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.), chair of the campaign arm for Senate Republicans, called for the party to unite amid concerns that internal divisions could hurt them in the 2022 midterms.
In a memo released by the National Republican Senatorial Committee addressed to “Republican voters, activists, leaders, donors,” Scott sounded the alarm over Democrats’ policies, stating that unity is necessary to win back the House and Senate next year.
The Florida Republican noted some within the GOP may be ready for a fight between the establishment and far-right wings of the party, telling them to “save it for another day” and that the “Republican Civil War is now cancelled.”
“Perhaps in more genteel times, a bunch of infighting and arguing wouldn’t do much damage. Truthfully, I enjoy bantering back and forth, and I have no interest in trying to quell intraparty policy dialogue and debates,” Scott wrote. “But now is not the time for division and here’s why: For the first time in any of our lives, socialism has become the unabashed, governing policy of the Democrat Party.”
“To beat this threat — the threat of socialism, crushing debt, loss of freedom — we must focus on addition, not subtraction; on looking forward, not backward,” he added. “Hopefully, at some point in the future, we will have beaten this threat back and find ourselves strong enough to afford self-indulgent divisions. But that day is not today.”
Scott’s memo comes as party operatives voice concerns that internal divisions, mainly over support for former President Trump and his role in the party moving forward, could cost them in a midterm cycle. The GOP is just a handful of seats away from retaking the House and the Senate.
Those divisions broke open last month following the Jan. 6 riot on Capitol Hill, with some Republican lawmakers saying Trump’s repeated claims that the November election was “stolen” from him helped fuel the insurrection. Ten House Republicans ultimately impeached him over the mob, and seven GOP senators voted to convict the former president.
Trump has warned these Republicans that he could support primary challengers who align with his policies.
“Where necessary and appropriate, I will back primary rivals who espouse Making America Great Again and our policy of America First. We want brilliant, strong, thoughtful, and compassionate leadership,” he said in a statement earlier this month.
Scott urged Republicans to rally around Trump’s message, pointing to Trump’s high popularity with the Republican base that remains after he left office. Scott also noted the former president won 74 million votes in November — the second highest total of any White House contender behind President Biden.
“President Trump brought many working-class voters our way, and Hispanic voters are increasingly inclined to vote Republican. Meanwhile, the Democrats have become the party of the elites, the naïve, and the socialist left, giving us tremendous opportunity to recapture our historic strength in America’s suburbs,” he wrote.
“Some of you voted for President Trump enthusiastically, some with reservations, and some with great reluctance. It doesn’t matter. We got 74 million votes, and we can easily add to our numbers if we work together,” he added.
Republicans are hopeful they can retake both chambers of Congress next year given that the party in the White House often loses seats in the first midterm of a new administration. The GOP only needs to flip five seats to win back the House, and a net gain of one will win it control of the Senate.
While Republicans will be able to go on the offensive in states like Arizona and Georgia, they are defending open seats in North Carolina, Ohio and Pennsylvania and will also have to defend Sen. Ron Johnson’s seat in Wisconsin.
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