Politics

McConnell and Schumer reelected as party leaders as Senate control remains undecided

Key Points
  • Mitch McConnell and Chuck Schumer were unanimously reelected leaders of the Senate Republican and Democratic caucuses, respectively.
  • It is still unclear which party will have a Senate majority next year, as NBC News has still not called four races in the 2020 election.
  • Democrats hoped to take the majority in the Senate to have unified control of government, as Joe Biden will win the White House and Democrats will hold the House, according to NBC.
Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., right, and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky.
Tom Williams | CQ Roll Call | Getty Images

Regardless of who controls the Senate next year, Republicans and Democrats will have the same leaders they do now.

The Senate GOP on Tuesday unanimously reelected Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell as the caucus' leader. Likewise, all Senate Democrats chose Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer to head their caucus.

The election results have not yet indicated who will enter the next Congress with a Senate majority. Republicans and Democrats will both come out of the 2020 election with at least 48 Senate seats, a net gain of one for Democrats, NBC News projects.

NBC has not called the winner of four Senate races. At least one outstanding race, and potentially two, in Georgia will get decided by a runoff in January.

Democrats entered Election Day with hopes of flipping the Senate, which would give the party unified control of government. Joe Biden will win the White House and Democrats will keep their House majority, according to NBC.

Holding the Senate would give Republicans a buffer against Democratic priorities.

U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) speaks after the Senate Republican GOP leadership election on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S. November 10, 2020. REUTERS/Erin Scott
ERIN SCOTT | REUTERS

McConnell has led the Senate GOP since 2007. The Kentucky Republican has been majority leader since 2015. He won reelection to the Senate last week with a roughly 20 percentage point victory over Democrat Amy McGrath.

Republicans will keep largely the same leadership team, as Sens. John Thune of South Dakota, John Barrasso of Wyoming, Roy Blunt of Missouri and Joni Ernst of Iowa will again round out the top five positions in the caucus. Sen. Rick Scott of Florida will take over the National Republican Senatorial Committee, the party's campaign arm.

Schumer, a New York Democrat, succeeded Harry Reid as Senate minority leader in 2017. The current Democratic leadership team will remain in place in the next Congress: Sens. Dick Durbin of Illinois, Patty Murray of Washington and Debbie Stabenow of Michigan will keep their spots as the second-, third- and fourth-ranking members of the caucus, respectively.

Sens. Cory Booker of New Jersey and Catherine Cortez Masto of Nevada will also hold Democratic leadership spots.

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