Aug 28, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Kinzinger says GOP in trouble ahead of midterms: "We have no leadership"

Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R) called out members of his own party and its leadership Sunday, telling NBC's "Meet the Press" that Republicans could suffer in the midterms if they fail to clarify their position on issues like abortion.

What he's saying: "I think Republicans are in real trouble because we have no leadership," Kinzinger said. "This is the problem ... [House Minority Leader] Kevin McCarthy isn’t leading, he’s asking, 'What does Marjorie Taylor Greene want me to do?'"

  • "[Senate Majority Leader] Mitch McConnell’s just trying to save the Senate. He’s probably not going to do that. We have no leaders, and no wonder our base basically believes everything Donald Trump says."

Kinzinger said the topic of abortion, in the wake of the Supreme Court's repeal of Roe v. Wade, "definitely changed the complexion of midterms some." Kinzinger noted he's always supported exceptions in abortion bans for rape, incest and when the life of the mother is in danger, "and that was actually a fairly common thing in the Republican Party."

  • "[A]nd now you’ve been seeing these Republicans go, 'There is absolutely no exception,' because somehow in the Republican Party, the crueler you are, the more likely you are to win a primary."

Asked about former President Trump's apparent mishandling of classified information, Kinzinger criticized "the hypocrisy of folks in my party that spent years chanting lock her up about Hillary Clinton" who are now "defending a man who very clearly did not take the national security of the United States to heart."

  • "[N]o president should act this way, obviously."

Worth noting: Kinzinger condemned Republicans who he said would undermine democracy, and said he'd prefer to see Democrats he disagrees with on policy issues win in the midterms.

  • "[I]f you have Republicans that are running against even left-wing Democrats that believe in democracy and believe in voting, that person should be elected over somebody who basically would overthrow the will of the people and ultimately destroy this country."
"This country cannot survive outside of democracy. It will turn into a power struggle between groups of different races, of different ethnicities, of different religions, because the thing that holds us together is this belief that we can self-govern.
"Take that away, this country's a mess. And so Republicans that are for that have no place in office. I don't care what their policy position on taxes are."
— Rep. Adam Kinzinger on "Meet the Press"
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