Four times Mitch McConnell criticized Donald Trump’s poor judgment
Four times Mitch McConnell criticized Donald Trump’s poor judgmentRachel Schilke
December 15, 06:00 AM December 15, 06:00 AM
Sen. Mitch McConnell’s disdain for former President Donald Trump has not been a well-kept secret, especially in the wake of the Republican Party’s disappointing showing in the midterm elections.
On Tuesday, the Senate minority leader launched his latest broadside against Trump, saying his endorsements limited the party’s ability to select better nominees in the party’s various primaries.
MCCONNELL BLAMES TRUMP ENDORSEMENT FOR CANDIDATE QUALITY ISSUES IN MIDTERM ELECTIONS
It was just the latest verbal volley from the Kentucky senator. Here are four times McConnell has called out what he perceives as Trump’s poor judgment and judge of character.
Prior to the 2022 midterm elections, McConnell lightly emphasized his concerns for candidate quality in the Senate races, particularly when it came to those endorsed by Trump.
At a luncheon in Kentucky, the minority leader said it was a greater likelihood that the House would flip rather than the Senate.
“Senate races are just different — they’re statewide, candidate quality has a lot to do with the outcome,” he said.
He had expressed previously his concerns over “subpar candidates,” and while he did not mention specific names, heads turned toward Don Bolduc in New Hampshire, Blake Masters in Arizona, and Herschel Walker in Georgia — all three Trump-backed candidates who lost.
His comments received criticism from Trump, who called him a “pawn for the Democrats to get whatever they want.”
“He is afraid of them, and will not do what has to be done,” Trump said. “A new Republican leader in the Senate should be picked immediately!”
Lackluster midterm performance
Most recently, McConnell said Trump’s endorsements limited the GOP’s ability to select better candidates in the primaries.
“We ended up having a candidate quality [issue],” he said on Tuesday. “Look at Arizona, look at New Hampshire, and the challenging situation in Georgia as well.”
“Our ability to control a primary outcome was quite limited in ’22 because the support of the former president proved to be very decisive in these primaries. So my view was: Do the best you can with the cards you’re dealt,” McConnell continued.
The former president has attempted to divert blame from himself onto McConnell as well. In a post prior to his 2024 run announcement, Trump said the GOP’s lackluster midterm performance was blatantly “Mitch McConnell’s fault.” He even went as far as to call McConnell’s wife and Trump’s transportation secretary, Elaine Chao, “Coco Chow,” in a seemingly racist remark.
Constitution comments slammed
McConnell has been openly critical about meetings the former president hosts and messages that he posts on his platform, Truth Social.
Last week, the minority leader criticized Trump’s comments to terminate the rules of the Constitution due to his belief in a fraudulent election in both 2020 and 2022.
“A Massive Fraud of this type and magnitude allows for the termination of all rules, regulations, and articles, even those found in the Constitution. Our great ‘founders’ did not want, and would not condone, False and Fraudulent elections!” the former president wrote.
Despite not stating explicitly that he would not support Trump in 2024, McConnell condemned Trump’s comments. He said anyone who suggested a suspension of the Constitution would likely “have a “very hard time being sworn in as the president.”
Ill-advised dinner party
At the end of November, McConnell joined several GOP members openly questioning whether Trump should even be considered as the GOP’s 2024 candidate after he had dinner with rapper Kanye West and known white nationalist Nick Fuentes.
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“Let me just say that there is no room in the Republican Party for antisemitism or white supremacy,” McConnell said. “Anyone meeting with people advocating that point of view, in my judgment, is highly unlikely to ever be elected president of the United States.”
McConnell won reelection as Republican leader in the Senate, 37 to 10, despite backlash from some of his caucus after the midterm elections.