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Mitch McConnell To Step Down As GOP Leader

Senate Luncheons

Foto: Getty Images

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell announced his decision to step down from the helm of the Republican Conference at the end of 2024, NBC News reports.

McConnell, 82, the longest-serving leader in Senate history having began his role in 2007, announced his decision during a Senate floor speech on Wednesday (February 28).

"One of life’s most underappreciated talents is to know when it’s time to move on to life’s next chapter, so I stand before you today, Mr. President and my colleagues, to say this will be my last term as Republican leader of the Senate," McConnell said, claiming he had "total clarity and peace about the sunset of my work," via NBC News.

Senate Minority Whip John Thune of South Dakota, No. 3 Republican Sen. John Brasso of Wyoming, and former GOP Whip Sen. John Cornyn are the three initial candidates expected to contend to be McConnell's successor, according to NBC News.

McConnell had previously served as the Senate majority leader from 2015 to 2021 until the Democrats reclaimed the majority during the 2020 elections. The Kentucky Republican was initially elected to the Senate in 1984 and re-elected to serve his current and seventh term in 2020.

Last March, the Kentucky Republican was hospitalized after tripping and falling at the Waldorf Astoria in Washington, D.C. McConnell had previously experienced a shoulder fracture after tripping and falling at his Kentucky home in 2019, which resulted in surgery.