Poll: If McConnell Doesn’t Return as GOP Leader, Who Succeeds Him?

National Journal
Peter Bell, Sarah Mimms and Michael Catalini
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Peter Bell Sarah Mimms and Michael Catalini
May 15, 2014, 5:01 p.m.

If Mc­Con­nell does not re­turn as lead­er, who is most likely to suc­ceed him?


John Cornyn: 53%
John Thune: 18%
John Bar­rasso: 2%
Roy Blunt: 23%
Oth­er: 4%

John Cornyn

“Cornyn is next in line. Can’t ima­gine they’d want to leap over him.”

“Time for Big John — Cornyn that is.”

“Cornyn en­joys the widest base of sup­port, and with his con­ser­vat­ive bona fides in place, tele­gen­ic pres­ence, and re­l­at­ive youth, he’d be a smart choice.”

“They should go with the less con­tro­ver­sial Thune, but they likely would go with Cornyn — com­ing from Texas, he can provide big­ger money IOUs.”

“Re­pub­lic­ans march up the lad­der.”

John Thune

“Time for someone who shines and smiles on cam­era.”

“Pos­sible new face for a stag­nant party — re­mem­ber when he and Pres­id­ent Obama shared the Na­tion­al Journ­al cov­er in 2005 or 2006? They were the fu­ture faces.”

“They will vote for the best TV can­did­ate.”

“If they are smart, they’ll make Thune the face of the Sen­ate.”

John Bar­rasso

“Bar­rasso is most cap­able of dis­rupt­ing Obama’s fi­nal two years without com­ing off as too brash to the pub­lic.”

Roy Blunt

“Blunt is the only one of the group with the or­gan­iz­ing savvy to pull it off.”

“Blunt is act­ing more and more like a uni­fi­er of the Re­pub­lic­an Party.”

“The ma­jor­ity of the caucus wants a deal-cut­ter — he is the ul­ti­mate deal-cut­ter.”

“A le­gis­lat­or’s le­gis­lat­or.”

If Mc­Con­nell does not re­turn as lead­er, who is most likely to suc­ceed him?


John Cornyn: 48%
John Thune: 27%
John Bar­rasso: 4%
Roy Blunt: 14%
Oth­er: 7%

John Cornyn

“Cornyn failed twice as NR­SC head and was re­war­ded with a pro­mo­tion. What’s the name of that prin­ciple?”

“He has worked his way slowly and re­spect­fully to the top. And he can raise money. Game over.”

“Cornyn has be­come an in­creas­ingly well-re­garded be­hind-the-scenes play­er, help­ing his col­leagues and pil­ing up fa­vors.”

“Re­pub­lic­ans like to re­ward seni­or­ity.”

“Cornyn has the best creds both in terms of lead­er­ship and as a sol­id con­ser­vat­ive.”

John Thune

“The best mix of new con­ser­vat­ives and old-school Sen­ate.”

“Cornyn is the lo­gic­al choice, but El Di­ablo Cruz lurks in the shad­ows to en­sure that will not hap­pen.”

“He’s smart, ar­tic­u­late, at­tract­ive, and sane. A great com­bin­a­tion to pos­sess for a party with the face of the angry white male.”

“Cornyn is a good guy, but if Mc­Con­nell is de­feated it will be time for a new gen­er­a­tion.”

John Bar­rasso

“He’s suf­fi­ciently con­ser­vat­ive, in­tel­li­gent, and am­bi­tious. Plus po­ten­tially the con­sensus choice.”

Roy Blunt

“Hav­ing served in the House lead­er­ship, he knows the drill. He’s been quietly ef­fect­ive in the Sen­ate.”


“Wide open. Only thing cer­tain — it won’t be Ted Cruz.”

… … . .

Demo­crat­ic Polit­ic­al In­siders Jill Alp­er, John An­za­lone, Brad Ban­non, Dave Beat­tie, Andy Bech­hoe­fer, Cor­nell Belch­er, Matt Ben­nett, Mitchell W. Ber­ger, Mike Ber­man, Stephanie Bosh, Paul Brath­waite, Donna Brazile, Mark Brew­er, Ed Bruley, George Bruno, Bon­nie Camp­bell, Bill Car­rick, Guy Cecil, Mar­tin J. Chavez, Tony Coelho, Larry Co­hen, Jerry Craw­ford, Jeff Daniel­son, Peter Daou, Howard Dean, Scott De­Fife, Jim De­mers, Tad Dev­ine, Dav­id Di Mar­tino, Debbie Din­gell, Mon­ica Dix­on, Patrick Dor­ton, Pat Du­jakovich, An­ita Dunn, Jeff Eller, Steve El­men­d­orf, Carter Eskew, Vic Fazio, Peter Fenn, Scott Fer­son, Jim Fleischmann, Tina Flournoy, Don Fo­ley, Jef­frey For­bes, Vin­cent Fril­lici, Gina Glantz, Niles Godes, John Mi­chael Gonza­lez, Joe Grand­mais­on, Anna Green­berg, Stan Green­berg, Pat Griffin, Larry Griso­lano, Mi­chael Gron­stal, Lisa Grove, Mar­cia Hale, Jill Hanauer, Dick Har­poot­li­an, Paul Harstad, Laura Hartigan, Doug Hat­t­away, Mike Henry, Kar­en Hicks, Leo Hindery Jr., Har­old Ickes, Mar­cus Jadotte, John Jameson, Steve Jard­ing, Jona­thon Jones, Jim Jordan, Gale Kauf­man, Lisa Koun­toupes, Celinda Lake, Dav­id Lang, Penny Lee, Chris Le­hane, Jeff Link, Bob Malo­ney, Jim Man­ley, Steve Marchand, Jim Mar­gol­is, Paul Maslin, Keith Ma­son, Susan Mc­Cue, Ger­ald McEntee, Steve McMa­hon, Tom McMa­hon, Phil Mc­Namara, Dav­id Med­ina, Mi­chael Mee­han, Mark Mell­man, John Mer­rigan, Mi­chael Mon­roe, Steve Murphy, Janet Na­pol­it­ano, Dav­id Nas­sar, Mar­cia Nich­ols, John Nor­ris, Tom Ochs, Tom O’Don­nell, Jef­frey Peck, De­bora Pig­na­telli, Tony Podesta, Je­frey Pol­lock, Jack Quinn, Larry Rasky, Mame Re­iley, Ed Rendell, Steve Ric­chetti, Will Robin­son, Steve Rosenth­al, Dav­id Rudd, Ry­an Rudom­in­er, John Ry­an, Mi­chael Sar­geant, Stephanie Schriock, Terry Shu­maker, Sean Sin­clair, Phil Sing­er, Erik Smith, Doug Sosnik, Greg Speed, Darry Sragow, Ken Strasma, Doug Thor­nell, Jef­frey Tram­mell, Ed Tur­l­ing­ton, Rick Wien­er, James Wil­li­ams, JoDee Win­ter­hof, Bri­an Wolff, Jon Young­dahl, and Jim Zo­gby.

GOP Polit­ic­al In­siders Dan Al­len, Stan An­der­son, Gary An­dres, Saul­i­us (Saul) Anuzis, Rich Ashooh, Whit Ayres, Brett Bader, Mitch Bain­wol, Bri­an Baker, Gary Bauer, Dav­id Beck­with, Paul Ben­necke, Clark Ben­son, Wayne Ber­man, Bri­an Bieron, Charlie Black, Kirk Bla­lock, Car­mine Boal, Jeff Boeyink, Ron Bon­jean, Jeff Bu­ley, Luke Byars, Nick Calio, Al Carde­n­as, Danny Car­roll, Alex Cas­tel­lanos, Ron Christie, Jim Cic­coni, Jonath­an Col­le­gio, Rob Collins, Cesar Conda, Jake Cor­man, Scott Cot­ting­ton, Jay Cran­ford, Greg Crist, Di­ane Crookham-John­son, Fer­gus Cul­len, Tom Dav­is, Mike Den­nehy, Ken Duber­stein, Debi Durham, Sara Fa­gen, Frank Fahren­kopf, John Fee­hery, Don Fierce, Mindy Finn, Carl Forti, Alex Gage, Bruce A. Gates, Sam Geduldig, Adam Geller, Ben­jamin Gins­berg, Dav­id Gir­ard-di­Carlo, Bill Green­er, Jonath­an Grella, Lanny Grif­fith, Janet Mullins Gris­som, Doug Gross, Todd Har­ris, Steve Hart, Chris­toph­er Healy, Ral­ph Hell­mann, Chris Hen­ick, Terry Holt, Dav­id Ian­nel­li, Ed Ingle, Jim In­no­cenzi, Clark Judge, Dav­id Keat­ing, Dav­id Ken­sing­er, Bob Kjel­lander, Ed Kut­ler, Chris La­Civ­ita, Jim Lake, Steven Law, Steve Lom­bardo, Kev­in Mad­den, Joel Maiola, Gary Malo­ney, Dav­id Mar­in, Mary Matal­in, Dan Mat­toon, Bri­an Mc­Cor­mack, Mark McKin­non, Kyle Mc­Slar­row, Ken Mehl­man, Jim Mer­rill, Lisa Cam­ooso Miller, Tim Mor­ris­on, Mike Murphy, Phil Musser, Ron Nehring, Terry Nel­son, Neil Ne­w­house, Dav­id Nor­cross, Zi­ad Ojakli, Jack Oliv­er, Todd Olsen, Kev­in O’Neill, Con­nie Par­toy­an, Billy Piper, Van B. Poole, Tom Rath, Scott Reed, Dav­id Rehr, Tom Reyn­olds, Steve Roberts, Jason Roe, Dav­id Roeder­er, Dan Schnur, Russ Schriefer, Rich Schwarm, Brent Seaborn, Rick Shelby, An­drew Shore, Kev­in Shuvalov, Don Sipple, Ken Spain, Fred Steep­er, Bob Steven­son, Terry Sul­li­van, Dav­id Tamasi, Eric Tan­en­blatt, Richard Temple, Heath Thompson, Jay Tim­mons, War­ren Tomp­kins, Ted Van Der Meid, Dirk van Don­gen, Jan van Lo­huizen, Stew­art Ver­dery, Dick Wadhams, John Weaver, Lezlee West­ine, Dave Win­ston, Ginny Wolfe, Fred Wszolek, and Mat­thew Zablud. 

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