Mitch McConnell spent years acquiring power -- only to end up at the mercy of Trump
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and President Donald J. Trump. White House Photo by Tia Dufour.

According to a report from the Washington Post, after decades of acquiring power in Congress, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) -- in the waning days of his career -- now finds himself at the mercy of Donald Trump.

Pointing out that the Kentucky Republican began his career as a congressional intern back in 1963, the Post's Michael Karnish writes that McConnell eventually became a master of the ins and outs of legislation and Senate rules which has allowed him to dominate the Senate even when his party was -- and is -- in the minority.

Then came the election of Donald Trump in 2016.

Writing, "For many of his 36 years in the Senate, Addison Mitchell McConnell III has cultivated an image as a master political and legislative tactician, a consummate insider who knows how to gain power and use it to the fullest, Karnish adds, "...in the months since the Jan. 6 attack, a different portrait of McConnell has taken shape. At 79, safely reelected last year to a seventh term and in his 16th year as the Senate's top Republican, McConnell is nonetheless increasingly playing the role of a conflicted and compromised booster of Trump's interests — not a leader with his own vision."

According to the report, McConnell has a long history to adapting to change in Congress and has always landed on his feet, but now sees his power diminished as he is saddled with Trump and a party that is forced to bow to his demands due to his rabid followers.

"Just two years ago, seemingly at the pinnacle of his power, McConnell could hardly have foreseen himself in such a precarious position," Karnish writes before adding, "By the time Trump faced his first impeachment trial in 2019, the pair had reached an understanding of mutual self-interest."

However, that soon fell apart when McConnell admitted Joe Biden beat Trump in 2020.

According to Democratic colleague Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL), Trump looms large in McConnell's political future despite losing re-election.

"Now he's looking at Trump, not in the rearview mirror, but looking through the windshield and realizing he's going to have to live with this man in the Republican Party for the foreseeable future," Durbin explained.

McConnel biographer John David Dyche, once an admirer, has a more dour opinion of the man the Senate GOP leader has become due to Trump.

"Cowardly, cynical, dishonorable, pathetic & wrong," he tweeted after McConnell chose to not vote to impeach Trump. "He has been, is & will live in infamy as 'Trump's principal enabler.' Will be a shameful but fitting epitaph."

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