Trump Again Calls for McConnell's Ouster

AP Photo/Timothy D. Easley

Former President Donald Trump and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell have been feuding almost since Trump arrived in Washington, D.C., in 2017. McConnell represented the hated “establishment,” and Trump saw him as a convenient whipping boy and scapegoat to blame for his own failures.


Nevertheless, the two men had to work together, and there was an uneasy truce between them. That is, until January 6, 2021.

After the Capitol riot, there was a rupture in whatever cordiality the two men shared. A month after the riot, McConnell claimed that Trump was “morally responsible” for the attack and said the former president’s actions surrounding the riot were “a disgraceful, disgraceful dereliction of duty.” But McConnell stopped short of voting to impeach the former president, pointing out that it was of dubious legality to impeach a president not in office.

Both men have sniped at each other over the last year, but it wasn’t until a story appeared over the weekend in The Federalist alleging that McConnell and his wife, former Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao, profited off their dealings with China because of Chao’s close ties to a shipping company that a permanent rupture occurred.

Trump let him have it on his Truth Social account:

“Why do Republicans Senators allow a broken down hack politician, Mitch McConnell, to openly disparage hard working Republican candidates for the United States Senate[?]” Trump asked in a Truth Social post on Sunday. “This is such an affront to honor and to leadership. He should spend more time (and money!) helping them get elected, and less time helping his crazy wife and family get rich on China!”


McConnell had just made the observation that GOP candidates were underperforming — candidates that Trump handpicked. Whether Trump is setting McConnell up to be the fall guy if Senate candidates like J.D. Vance, Mehmet Oz, Blake Masters, and Herschel Walker — all trailing in their races — were to lose, is unknown. Certainly, McConnell will be faulted for bad-mouthing GOP candidates.

The Hill:

“Mitch McConnell is not an Opposition Leader, he is a pawn for the Democrats to get whatever they want,” Trump said in his statement. “He is afraid of them, and will not do what has to be done. A new Republican Leader in the Senate should be picked immediately!”

Trump has feuded with McConnell, who he has dubbed “Old Crow,” since the Senate leader denounced the former president in Congress for his role in the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol.

McConnell may be a lot of things, but a “pawn for the Democrats”? McConnell is operating under a huge handicap; there isn’t a Republican majority in the Senate. Since we live in a federal republic governed by democratic rules, McConnell would have needed a majority to stop the Inflation Reduction Act [sic].

Of course, if there were a GOP majority, the legislation would never have come to the floor in the first place.


What does Trump mean when he says that McConnell “will not do what has to be done”? Aside from pulling a Queen Elizabeth I and locking several Democrats in a room until after the vote, under the rules of the Senate, McConnell was powerless to stop the passage of the IRA.

But Trump doesn’t care about reality. This is about the exercise of power. And wanting McConnell out of the minority leader’s chair is a test of loyalty for Trump-backed candidates and sitting senators. Trump knows McConnell has the votes to remain leader — at present. But next January when Congress reorganizes, McConnell can expect a stiff challenge from the MAGA wing of the party.



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