Politics

‘A True Leader’: Mitch McConnell Praises Roy Blunt After Retirement Announcement

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Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell praised Sen. Roy Blunt in a Monday statement after the Missouri Republican announced he would not be seeking reelection.

“Senator Blunt’s announced retirement will be a loss for the Republican conference and the entire Senate. In just 10 years in this body, he’s quickly become a true leader, a policy heavyweight, and a driving force behind both key conservative victories and essential bipartisan work,” McConnell said in a statement.

“It says a great deal about who Roy is that he simultaneously served our Republican side so effectively in senior party leadership while also running the crucial Rules Committee,” McConnell said.

The senator announced Monday that he will not run again in 2022, making him the most recent Republican to not seek reelection. Blunt was elected into the Senate in 2010. (RELATED: Roy Blunt Says Trump Should Finish Term — He ‘Touched A Hot Stove’ And Is ‘Unlikely To Touch It Again’)

“After 14 general election victories, three to county office, seven to the United States House of Representatives, and four statewide elections, I won’t be a candidate for reelection to the United States Senate next year,” Blunt said in a video announcement.

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Blunt was the state’s Republican secretary of state for the first time in 50 years and a House member for seven terms, McConnell said in the statement. Colleagues appointed Blunt as chief deputy whip “and asked him to take over as Majority Whip” during his political career.

“Sen. Blunt’s mastery of healthcare issues has paid especially big dividends to the American people. Throughout this pandemic no individual Senator has done more to drive testing efforts or advance the historic and successful sprint to vaccines,” McConnell said.

“He’s long been a champion of everything from patient choice and affordability to mental health to the scientific research that moves us forward. His legacy on these fronts will be impossible to overstate,” McConnell added.

McConnell praised Blunt for his service to the state of Missouri and the country and said the Missouri senator “has been an enormous asset to all of his colleagues,” according to the statement.

“I’m very sorry he’ll be stepping away but am glad the country has two more years to keep benefitting from his talent,” McConnell said.

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