Exclusive-McConnell GOP Challenger: Mitch Must 'Lead,' Defend Cruz

Exclusive-McConnell GOP Challenger: Mitch Must 'Lead,' Defend Cruz

Businessman Matt Bevin, the man facing Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell in a primary election next year, told Breitbart News on Tuesday that he believes McConnell should find out exactly who in the GOP establishment is behind the shopping of opposition research on Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX). 

“I honestly just wish Mitch McConnell would lead on anything,” Bevin said. “And more specifically, and I mean this sincerely, I wish he would lead on what is being debated currently before the Senate right now and that is with respect to defunding of Obamacare. I want him to lead on what he was sent there to do and that is represent the will of the people. People are so overwhelmingly opposed to Obamacare that Mitch McConnell’s unwillingness to lead out in front on this issue is not good.”

“Regardless of who it is that’s shopping oppo research to Chris Wallace, the fact that we have leadership in the Republican Party that are focused on that instead of supporting true conservative thinking, is shameful,” Bevin added. “Because that is energy, that is time, that is emotion that is being spent on things that the American people do not want. Any efforts to undermine Ted Cruz fly in the face of what the American people want.”

Bevin said the attacks on Cruz are from politicians acting in the interest of keeping the “status quo” in place.

“They are willing to attack those from within their own ranks that are actually doing the will of the people because the status quo of the political establishment on both sides of the aisle has more to do with preserving itself into perpetuity than it does about legislating,” Bevin said. “That is a perfect screaming example of why term limits would do a lot to clean this up. People whose sole primary purpose is to get re-elected are not people who typically will be doing what’s right for the American people.”

Bevin argued that McConnell’s and Senate Minority Whip John Cornyn’s alleged decision to whip votes against Cruz is a leadership gap. “When you are not a leader, you begrudge people who are,” Bevin said. “McConnell is not a leader so he resents the fact that Ted Cruz is doing the job that he should be doing. It’s because of one two things: Either McConnell doesn’t have the ability or he doesn’t have the backbone, but either way he isn’t doing his job.” 

Bevin argued, too, that he thinks McConnell is in trouble not because Cruz wanted him to be but because Cruz’s fight against Obamacare has inadvertently exposed him.

“The very thing that Mitch McConnell repeatedly ad nauseum claims to be fighting [is what Cruz is actually fighting],” Bevin said. “He is being called to action not by some small sliver of the populace but by an overwhelming majority of the American people, Republican and Democrat, are calling him to action, and the action they are calling him to is to lead the fight against the funding of Obamacare. And he is absolutely derelict in his duties. He would be removed from command if he were in the private sector or in the military.”

Bevin said he is receiving lots more support from the grassroots in Kentucky and nationwide thanks to what he described as McConnell’s lack of leadership. More people are coming to his website, he said, and engaging with him on social media. “The number of hits, the number of people following us on Twitter, is increasing,” he said. “The number of people retweeting our comments, the number of media interviews, are increasing. There is an increasing awareness that we were not just blustering when we said this was a man who does not know how to lead. Now they are recognizing in blazing color this to be true and it relates to Obamacare.”

Reached by phone on Tuesday and asked to respond to Bevin’s comments, McConnell senate spokesman Don Stewart told Breitbart News he had “no comment” and referred Breitbart News to McConnell’s campaign manager Jesse Benton for any comment. Benton has not returned an email.