Cornyn: 'All the money in the world' won't help O'Rourke win Texas

Cornyn: 'All the money in the world' won't help O'Rourke win Texas
© Anna Moneymaker
Senate Majority Whip John CornynJohn CornynTrump slams 'very dumb' O'Rourke for proposals on guns, tax exempt status for churches GOP cautions Graham against hauling Biden before Senate Succession at DHS up in the air as Trump set to nominate new head MORE (R-Texas) on Friday brushed off a record-breaking fundraising haul from Rep. Beto O'RourkeBeto O'RourkePoll: Biden holds 10-point lead nationally over Warren Authorities seize weapons from alleged neo-Nazi leader under 'red flag' law Super PAC seeks to spend more than million supporting Yang MORE (D), saying it won't be enough for the Democratic challenger to unseat Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Better Medicare Alliance - Trump has had a rough October Hillicon Valley: GOP lawmakers offer election security measure | FTC Dem worries government is 'captured' by Big Tech | Lawmakers condemn Apple over Hong Kong censorship Lawmakers condemn Apple, Activision Blizzard over censorship of Hong Kong protesters MORE (R-Texas).
O'Rourke's campaign announced Friday that he raised more than $38 million during the third quarter, which ended Sept. 30. Cruz, who is seeking a second Senate term, brought in $12 million during the same three-month period.
Cornyn — who has at times had a strained relationship with Cruz but is supporting his campaign — acknowledged that O'Rourke raised "a lot of money," but he predicted Cruz will still win when voters head to the polls on Nov. 6.
"I think all the money in the world is not going to help Beto at this point because I think he is self-identified as a national Democrat, which means he's way too liberal to get elected in Texas," Cornyn told reporters.
O'Rourke, who was elected to the House in 2012, has pledged not to take money from PACs in his Senate bid. In a video posted to Twitter he said the third-quarter funds came from more than 800,000 contributions.
Cornyn said "adoring [media] coverage" explains part of the enthusiasm for O'Rourke's campaign.
"He's obviously captured a lot of people's imagination and the ability to raise money through these portals — like ActBlue, small donations — is obviously allowed him to raise a bunch of money," Cornyn said. "Good for him, but I still don't think he's going to win."
O'Rourke is considered an underdog in his race against Cruz, despite his fundraising numbers.
A survey from Quinnipiac University Poll released Thursday found Cruz with a 9-point lead. It's the same edge Cruz had in the same poll three weeks ago.
Cornyn said the poll is "probably in the ballpark" for the race, but predicted Cruz will "win by double digits" next month.
Cruz has a 7-point lead over O'Rourke in the race, according to a RealClearPolitics average of polling.
Cruz and O'Rourke have been locked in a tighter-than-expected campaign for months, bolstering hopes among Democrats that they might be able to flip the seat.
In addition to Texas, Democrats are trying to pick up Senate seats in Tennessee and Arizona, where GOP Sens. Bob CorkerRobert (Bob) Phillips CorkerVulnerable senators hold the key to Trump's fate Trump's GOP impeachment firewall holds strong George Conway hits Republicans for not saying Trump's name while criticizing policy MORE (Tenn.) and Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeVulnerable senators hold the key to Trump's fate Trump's GOP impeachment firewall holds strong How to survive an impeachment MORE (Ariz.) are retiring from Congress. They're also hoping to unseat 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 (Nev.), the only Senate Republican up for reelection in a state won by Hillary Clinton in 2016.
Rep. Marsha BlackburnMarsha BlackburnGraham, Van Hollen introduce Turkey sanctions bill Lawmakers toast Greta Van Susteren's new show GOP senators say Erdoğan White House invitation should be revoked MORE (R) is leading the Tennessee race by more than 5 percentage points on average, according to RealClearPolitics. But a New York Times/Siena College poll released Friday had up her 14 points over Democratic candidate Phil Bredesen, a former governor of Tennessee.
Cornyn added on Friday that he was feelingly "increasingly optimistic" that Republicans would hold their majority in the Senate, where they currently have a 51-49 advantage over Democrats. He pointed to Tennessee as well as races in Missouri and North Dakota, where Democratic Sens. Claire McCaskillClaire Conner McCaskillIranian attacks expose vulnerability of campaign email accounts Ex-CIA chief worries campaigns falling short on cybersecurity Ocasio-Cortez blasts NYT editor for suggesting Tlaib, Omar aren't representative of Midwest MORE and Heidi HeitkampMary (Heidi) Kathryn HeitkampThe Hill's Morning Report — Biden steadies in third debate as top tier remains the same Trump wins 60 percent approval in rural areas of key states Pence to push new NAFTA deal in visit to Iowa MORE, respectively, are up for reelection in states that President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump says he doesn't want NYT in the White House Veterans group backs lawsuits to halt Trump's use of military funding for border wall Schiff punches back after GOP censure resolution fails MORE won by double digits in 2016.
"All of the races seem to be moving in our direction," said Cornyn, who gave some credit to the recent confirmation of Supreme Court Justice Brett KavanaughBrett Michael KavanaughMajority disapprove of Trump Supreme Court nominations, says poll These 3 women are defining the race to unseat Trump On The Money: Supreme Court takes up challenge to CFPB | Warren's surge brings scrutiny to wealth tax | Senators eye curbs on Trump emergency powers MORE. "I just think the Kavanaugh hearing was important. But it's not just that, but the realization of who would be in charge if, in fact, Democrats did win the majority."