Trump adviser says Cruz could lose Senate race

An adviser to President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump nominates ambassador to Turkey Trump heads to Mar-a-Lago after signing bill to avert shutdown CNN, MSNBC to air ad turned down by Fox over Nazi imagery MORE reportedly told GOP donors on Saturday that it was a possibility that Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzPoll shows competitive matchup if O’Rourke ran for Senate again Democrats veer left as Trump cements hold on Republicans O’Rourke heading to Wisconsin amid 2020 speculation MORE (R-Texas) could lose his Senate race to Democratic challenger Rep. Beto O'RourkeRobert (Beto) Francis O'RourkePoll: Sanders, Biden seen as most popular second choices in Dem primary O'Rourke says he'd 'absolutely' take down border wall near El Paso if he could NBC, CNN to host first two Democratic presidential primary debates MORE (Texas), citing likability.

White House budget chief Mick MulvaneyJohn (Mick) Michael MulvaneyTrump declares national emergency at border Puerto Rico governor threatens legal action over national emergency declaration: 'See you in court' Trump to sign border deal, declare national emergency MORE told Republicans at a closed-door meeting that it was a "possibility" that Cruz could lose his Senate race while Republicans such as Florida Gov. Rick Scott could win, The New York Times reports.

“There’s a very real possibility we will win a race for Senate in Florida and lose a race in Texas for Senate, OK?” Mulvaney said, according to audio obtained by the Times.

“I don’t think it’s likely, but it’s a possibility. How likable is a candidate? That still counts.”


Mulvaney reportedly made the comments during an event alongside Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna Romney McDaniel.

However, Mulvaney attempted to assuage fears of widespread Democratic victories in the November midterm elections, insisting that no "blue wave" was coming to elect Democrats to office.

Democrats are hoping for a net gain of at least 23 seats to take back a majority in the House, while Republicans are defending their slim 51-49 seat majority in the Senate.

“They want you to think there’s a blue wave when there’s not,” Mulvaney said Saturday, while acknowledging that House Republicans face a challenging map with a number of GOP-held seats considered toss-ups.

“I don’t know how many seats we’ve got this year, but there’s got to be, how many?” Mulvaney said. “Twenty? Thirty? Forty?”

His remarks are some of the most candid on Cruz's race from the White House, which threw its support behind Cruz's reelection bid last month amid polls showing a tightening race.

Cruz, a one-term Republican senator who first took office in 2013, currently leads his opponent by single digits, according to several recent polls.

Spokespeople for Mulvaney and McDaniel did not immediately respond to the Times's request for comment.