Last month, the Republican National Committee was so eager to curry favor with Donald Trump, it paid the former president to host a party event and invited him to speak at a donor event.
The result was predictable: Trump not only lied about his 2020 defeat, he also lashed out at Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), calling his party’s most powerful lawmaker a “dumb son of a b—-” and a “stone cold loser” as part of a lengthy harangue.
It came on the heels of a similar condemnation in February, in which Trump said of 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.”
Yesterday, as the Washington Post noted, he did it again.
Former president Donald Trump blasted Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) as “weak” and “hopeless” in an interview that aired Thursday on the right-wing One America News.
As part of a tirade that included the former president whining about other Republicans failing to echo his bonkers conspiracy theories, Trump added, “[Democrats] get whatever they want approved. McConnell is hopeless and he can’t stop anything.”
I’m not generally inclined to defend the Senate minority leader, but there was a degree of irony to Trump’s condemnations: McConnell is actually stopping all sorts of things, usually with the specific intention of helping the former president.
McConnell shielded Trump from facing consequences in his impeachment trial; McConnell is in the process of shielding Trump again by scuttling an independent Jan. 6 commission; and as President Joe Biden looks for 10 Senate Republicans to help advance key legislative priorities, McConnell has so far prevented this from happening.
On issues ranging from voting rights to immigration, the White House has low expectations for legislative success, precisely because of McConnell’s unyielding obstructionism.
Meanwhile, as the Senate minority leader takes advantage of every possible opportunity to stand in Democrats’ way, the Kentucky Republican also lets the public know that he’s “absolutely” prepared to support Trump’s 2024 presidential campaign, should it exist.
Given the circumstances, he should probably be thanking McConnell and his expressing his gratitude, not publicly condemning him.
So why is it, exactly, that the former president continues to attack the GOP Senate leader? Because McConnell accepted the results of his own country’s elections and criticized Trump for failing to do the same.
And that alone makes McConnell a villain in Trump’s eyes. The consequence, of course, is the former president continuing to divide his party in order to satisfy his ego.