On Thursday, writing for MSNBC, Steve Benen outlined how former President Donald Trump's latest attack on Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) is a sign that he still intends to try to throw him out of Senate leadership and replace him with someone he sees as a greater loyalist.
McConnell did his utmost to pass many of Trump's priorities, and helped him stack the courts with right-wing partisans — but he also spoke out against Trump's incitement of the January 6 riot and helped President Joe Biden pass his infrastructure bill, both of which have infuriated the former president.
"During his presidency, Donald Trump didn't exactly appreciate all of the things then-Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell did for him," wrote Benen. "After Trump's 2020 defeat, his contempt for the Kentucky senator reached new levels. McConnell had the audacity to accept the results of his own country's elections and criticize Trump for failing to do the same. In February, the former president responded by calling the GOP leader 'a dour, sullen, and unsmiling political hack.' In May, Trump added that McConnell is a 'dumb son of a b----' and a 'stone cold loser' as part of a lengthy harangue."
In his latest tantrum, Trump called McConnell a "Broken Old Crow" and said that "he allowed the Democrats to get their act together and pass the $1.2 Trillion 'Non-Infrastructure' Green New Deal Bill, which is a disaster for America."
"Trump doesn't just intend to whine indefinitely about the Senate minority leader," wrote Benen. "In recent months, the former president has made calls directly to GOP senators, hoping to remove McConnell from his leadership position, and exploring possible successors who would be loyal to Trump. In other words, statements like yesterday were a reminder of the former president's capacity for hysterical tirades, but it was also part of a larger campaign in which Trump intends to replace McConnell and help arrange for a new Senate Republican leader."
The irony, concluded Benen, is that despite all these attacks, McConnell has said he would "absolutely" support Trump if he is the nominee again in 2024.
"Maybe it's time to ask him again?" wrote Benen. "Would McConnell welcome another four years of corrupt madness from a president who's desperate to derail the senator's career?"
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