The governor of Kentucky will not commit to replacing U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) with a Republican, should McConnell's term end early, Fox News reports.
Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear, a Democrat, was asked by reporters on Thursday about what he would do if McConnell were to resign early.
Beshear, however, refused to even consider the possibility.
"There is no Senate vacancy. Senator McConnell has said he's going to serve out his term, and I believe him. So, I'm not going to speculate about something that hasn't happened and isn't going to happen," Beshear said.
Reporters, not satisfied with this response, continued to press Beshear on the issue.
Beshear then reiterated his point, saying, "Well, I respect Sen. McConnell and his health enough, first of all, not to sensationalize it and, second, there is no vacancy. So he has said he's going to serve out his term, and I fully believe him."
There is currently no indication that McConnell has any plans to step down from the U.S. Senate. But, there has been talk of an early retirement in light of McConnell's recent health struggles.
The reader may remember that McConnell, about a month ago, froze up during a news conference in Washington, D.C. At the time, it was claimed that McConnell "felt light-headed."
On Wednesday, McConnell froze up again, during another news conference. This time it happened when McConnell was asked, "What are your thoughts on running for re-election?"
"What're my thoughts about what?" McConnell replied, prompting the reporter to repeat the question. McConnell subsequently froze up for about 10 seconds before one aide and then a second aide came to his assistance.
This particular freeze lasted about 30 seconds.
Afterward, Congress's attending physician, Dr. Brian Monahan, released a statement, saying:
I have consulted with Leader McConnell and conferred with his neurology team. After evaluating yesterday’s incident, I have informed Leader McConnell that he is medically clear to continue with his schedule as planned. Occasional lightheadedness is not uncommon in concussion recovery and can also be expected as a result of dehydration.
Regardless of what is causing these episodes, many are now arguing that McConnell is unfit for office and, accordingly, ought to consider retiring. This is what caused reporters to ask Beshear how he would respond to an early departure from McConnell.
As we saw, Beshear refused to entertain the possibility. Kentucky law would seem to indicate that Beshear has to replace McConnell with a Republican, according to the Washington Examiner.