Former President Donald Trump’s wrath boiled over Tuesday as he issued a fiery statement labeling Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell a “dour, sullen, and unsmiling political hack.”
Trump and McConnell became unlikely allies during the Trump administration, but that ended in the wake of the Capitol riot last month.
The Kentucky Republican vented his anger over the Capitol incursion on Jan. 6 and on Saturday delivered a scathing indictment of Trump’s actions.
“Former President Trump’s actions preceding the riot were a disgraceful dereliction of duty,” McConnell said in a statement.
“There is no question former President Trump bears moral responsibility. His supporters stormed the Capitol because of the unhinged falsehoods he shouted into the world’s largest megaphone. His behavior during and after the chaos was also unconscionable,” McConnell wrote.
He added that he might have voted to convict Trump in the former president’s impeachment trial if not for the fact that it would have been unconstitutional to do so.
Trump’s fire-breathing reply arrived Tuesday in the form of a statement from his Save America PAC, which branded McConnell a failure as a leader.
“The Republican Party can never again be respected or strong with political ‘leaders’ like Sen. Mitch McConnell at its helm,” the former president said. “McConnell’s dedication to business as usual, status quo policies, together with his lack of political insight, wisdom, skill, and personality, has rapidly driven him from Majority Leader to Minority Leader, and it will only get worse.
“The Democrats and Chuck Schumer play McConnell like a fiddle — they’ve never had it so good — and they want to keep it that way! We know our America First agenda is a winner, not McConnell’s Beltway First agenda or Biden’s America Last,” Trump wrote.
He contrasted his ability to get Republicans elected with that of McConnell.
“In 2020, I received the most votes of any sitting President in history, almost 75,000,000,” Trump wrote. “Every incumbent House Republican won for the first time in decades, and we flipped 15 seats, almost costing Nancy Pelosi her job. Republicans won majorities in at least 59 of the 98 partisan legislative chambers, and the Democrats failed to flip a single legislative chamber from red to blue.
“And in ‘Mitch’s Senate,’ over the last two election cycles, I single-handedly saved at least 12 Senate seats, more than eight in the 2020 cycle alone — and then came the Georgia disaster, where we should have won both U.S. Senate seats, but McConnell matched the Democrat offer of $2,000 stimulus checks with $600. How does that work? It became the Democrats’ principal advertisement, and a big winner for them it was.
“McConnell then put himself, one of the most unpopular politicians in the United States, into the advertisements. Many Republicans in Georgia voted Democrat, or just didn’t vote, because of their anguish at their inept Governor, Brian Kemp, Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, and the Republican Party, for not doing its job on Election Integrity during the 2020 Presidential race.
“It was a complete election disaster in Georgia, and certain other swing states.”
Trump said the minority leader is not the winner America needs.
“McConnell did nothing, and will never do what needs to be done in order to secure a fair and just electoral system into the future. He doesn’t have what it takes, never did, and never will,” the former president said, regretting that he had endorsed McConnell for re-election.
“Without my endorsement, McConnell would have lost, and lost badly. Now, his numbers are lower than ever before, he is destroying the Republican side of the Senate, and in so doing, seriously hurting our Country,” he wrote.
Trump said McConnell is part of the soft-on-China crowd.
“Likewise, McConnell has no credibility on China because of his family’s substantial Chinese business holdings. He does nothing on this tremendous economic and military threat,” he wrote.
The former president then indicated he will be a political force to be reckoned with for anyone who aligns himself or herself with McConnell.
“Mitch is a dour, sullen, and unsmiling political hack, and if Republican Senators are going to stay with him, they will not win again,” Trump wrote. “He will never do what needs to be done, or what is right for our Country. Where necessary and appropriate, I will back primary rivals who espouse Making America Great Again and our policy of America First. We want brilliant, strong, thoughtful, and compassionate leadership.”
Trump closed by contrasting his achievements with America’s current plight and said pseudo-leaders such as McConnell are not part of the answer.
“Prior to the pandemic, we produced the greatest economy and jobs numbers in the history of our Country, and likewise, our economic recovery after Covid was the best in the world,” he wrote. “We cut taxes and regulations, rebuilt our military, took care of our Vets, became energy independent, built the wall and stopped the massive inflow of illegals into our Country, and so much more.
“And now, illegals are pouring in, pipelines are being stopped, taxes will be going up, and we will no longer be energy independent. This is a big moment for our country, and we cannot let it pass by using third rate ‘leaders’ to dictate our future!”
Politico, citing a source it did not name, said Trump dictated the statement himself and that the initial statement poked fun at McConnell over having multiple chins.
A personal familiar with the crafting of the statement confirmed that it could have been far worse. An earlier draft mocked McConnell for having multiple chins, the person said.https://t.co/0ehOqMoNdp
— Sam Stein (@samstein) February 16, 2021
“There was also a lot of repetitive stuff and definitely something about him having too many chins but not enough smarts,” the person said.
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