Panicked Mitch McConnell begging federal judges to retire before election as Trump's 2020 prospects dim
Sen. Mitch McConnell, photo by Gage Skidmore

On Monday, the Courier-Journal reported that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) is privately calling Republican-appointed federal judges and urging them to retire, or take senior status, before rather than after the 2020 presidential election.


"Yes, he has made calls," said one anonymous source close to the GOP leader.

It is unclear when McConnell started making this push, but it continues as President Donald Trump's re-election prospects look worse than they did a month ago. Media criticism of his handling of the pandemic, the ensuing economic collapse, and the greatly diminished chances that the Democratic primary will end in a brokered convention have all made Trump's path to a second term rockier.

In that event, it seems that McConnell wants to make sure that the GOP has ample time to replace any conservative federal judge who wants to retire before that point, rather than risk Democrats getting a chance to do so.