Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) slammed Majority Leader Mitch McConnell as “the poster boy for Republicans’ spinelessness” in a speech today linking McConnell’s advocacy for Trump to the Senate GOP agenda.
Reid accused Republicans of using the 10-day Senate recess not to come up with a Zika emergency funding solution but “boasting their Republican standard bearer, Donald Trump.”
McConnell was promoting his new book, The Long Game: A Memoir, on various news outlets during the break, where he got asked many questions about the presumptive GOP presidential nominee.
“The Republican Party’s capitulation to Donald Trump is complete,” Reid declared on the Senate floor today. “I was especially disappointed to see that the senior senator from Kentucky personally led this pro-Trump propaganda tour. Senator McConnell spent last week as Donald Trump’s head cheerleader – a trumpet. The Republican leader left Washington 10 days ago without doing his job on Zika so he could stump for Trump.”
Reid slammed McConnell for not denouncing Trump’s attacks on Judge Gonzalo Curiel. Asked multiple times on Sunday Meet the Press whether Trump’s attacks on Curiel surrounding his Mexican heritage were racist, McConnell repeatedly replied, “I couldn’t disagree more with what he had to say.”
“Senator McConnell and congressional Republican leaders have never taken a stand against Trump’s vile rhetoric. That’s because the hate emanating from Trump’s mouth reflects the Republican Party’s agenda here in the United States Senate for the past seven and a half years. The agenda that Senator McConnell himself promoted,” Reid charged.
“For years, Senator McConnell and other Republican leaders embraced the darkest elements within their party. The Republican Party made anti-woman, anti-Latino, anti-Muslim, anti-immigrant, and anti-Obama policies the norm.”
Reid said the situation showed that McConnell “is the poster boy for Republicans’ spinelessness that allowed Donald Trump to be the Republican nominee for president of the United States.”
The top Senate Dem quoted Red State, Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Neb.) and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich condemning Trump’s remarks about the judge.
Sasse, a Trump opponent, tweeted: “Public Service Announcement: Saying someone can’t do a specific job because of his or her race is the literal definition of ‘racism.’”
“But for his part, Senator McConnell is doubling down on Trump. The Republican leader is waging a non-stop campaign to persuade any Republicans who have doubts about supporting Trump to drop their complaints and fall in line,” Reid continued. “…Now that he has firmly entrenched himself in Trump’s corner, I can’t help but wonder just how far Senator McConnell’s support extends.”
“The Republican leader has so fully embraced Donald Trump that we are all unclear as to where Trump’s platform ends and Senate Republicans’ begins. If the Republican leader believes he is fit to be president of the United States, he must explain why this is acceptable,” he said.
“The nation has a right to know how far Senate Republicans’ support of Donald Trump extends. And that starts with the Republican leader. Because now, there does not appear to be any daylight between Donald Trump and Senator McConnell.”