ANDERSON – Republicans disagree over the right way to win back control of the U.S. Senate. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell says the election should be about the party now in control, the Democrats.

His approach is reflected in a message on the website of the National Republican Senatorial Committee. “STOP NANCY PELOSI AND CHUCK SCHUMER!” it reads. “Can we count on YOU to help stop them from destroying our country?”

Rick Scott, chair of that committee, has a different approach. He wants to talk about his 11-point plan to rescue America. “This is not the time to be timid,” he told the Conservative Political Action Committee. “This is the time to be bold. Our nation’s future can be bright, but we need a plan to take this country back. I warn you before you read it, though. This plan is not for the faint of heart. It will trigger a lot of the people. Based on how Democrats are attacking me this week, I’d say we’ve hit the bullseye.”

On its own website, the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee features a headline from McClatchy news service. “Democrats go old school,” it says, “drop Rick Scott’s controversial ‘rescue’ plan in the mail.”


The story by Alex Roarty reports that the committee sent the plan to two dozen Republican Senate candidates across the country. The rationale was that Republican candidates were going to own the plan, so they might as well know what was in it. The site quotes an editorial from the Palm Beach Post.

“So, give Scott credit,” it says. “He did what his colleagues are reluctant to do. No beating around the bush. No fear of exposing the party as wrong-headed, inhumane, hypocritical, what have you. Scott put his dubious party platform down on paper for all the world to see.”

Democrats seem almost gleeful in confronting the plan. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s office circulated a study showing the plan would raise revenues by more than $100 billion, increasing taxes mostly on households making less than $100,000 a year.

Scott isn’t swayed by the critics. He says what the plan really proposes is a tax system that is fair.

“I want to make people’s taxes lower,” he told CNN, “but at the same time, you’ve got billionaires out there that don’t pay income tax. Billionaires ought to pay their fair share.”


Scott has made clear, though, that he’s not just targeting the rich. “We’ve got people who’ve figured out how to become part of the woke left that just take government money,” he told reporters. “And they’re expecting other people to pay.”

Scott seems more than ready to take on the Democrats. “In their new socialist America, everyone will obey and no one will be allowed to complain,” he told CPAC. “If you do speak up, boom – you will be canceled. It’s time to take our country back, and I’m here to tell you the American people are going to give a complete butt-kicking to the Democrats this November.”

McConnell has made it clear he’s not on board with Scott’s vision. “Let me tell you what would not be a part of our agenda,” he told reporters. “We will not have as part of our agenda a bill that raises taxes on half the American people, and sunsets Social Security and Medicare within five years.”

If they win back a majority, McConnell said, Republicans “will focus instead on what the American people are concerned about: Inflation, energy, defense, the border and crime.”

He’s in no hurry, though, to talk about any detailed agenda. Win the election first, he says. Then tell the voters what you plan to do. Scott thinks McConnell has that backwards. On that, he and the Democrats agree. 

Kelly Hawes is a columnist for CNHI News Indiana. He can be reached at kelly.hawes@indianamediagroup.com. Find him on Twitter @Kelly_Hawes.