McConnell gushes over Manchin and Sinema holding up spending package: 'I pray for them -- we give them lots of love!'
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky speaking at CPAC 2011 (Gage Skidmore/Flickr)

Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) on Wednesday had warm words for Sens. Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) and Joe Manchin (D-WV), both of whom are holding up passage of a $3.5 trillion spending plan and demanding that it be cut.

As reported by NBC News' Frank Thorp, McConnell reflected on the role the two Democratic senators have played in slowing down passage of their own party's agenda.

"Either one of them could kill the whole bill, I don't expect that to happen," he said. "Either one of them could make dramatic changes in it, that could happen. Or either one of them could basically make a few cosmetic changes and throw in the towel."

McConnell then praised them for being holdouts in stopping the package from a quick passage.

"We're down to two who are resisting: Joe Manchin from West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema from Arizona," he said. "I pray for them every night. I wish them well. We give them lots of love."

Manchin last week said that the proposed package, which will include $3.5 trillion in new spending over a 10-year period, was too large, although he didn't raise any specific objections to spending in the bill or propose any specific ways that the bill should be cut.