Former President Donald Trump, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.Drew Angerer/Getty Images, Joe Maiorana/AP Photo
Trump is calling allies and encouraging them to blame McConnell for the GOP’s midterm results, CNN said.
Trump has criticized McConnell for spending too much on Alaska while neglecting other competitive races.
Trump is rallying opposition to McConnell ahead of leadership elections next week.
Former President Donald Trump is calling up Republican allies and encouraging them to blame Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell for lackluster midterm results, a CNN report says.
After the Republican “red wave” failed to materialize and Democrats managed to hold control of the Senate, many in the party have directly blamed the former president.
However, Trump has been making phone calls to elected officials and incoming members of Congress and encouraging them to turn their anger toward McConnell, CNN reported.
Trump publicly criticized McConnell for focusing on the GOP proxy war in the Alaska Senate race. The McConnell-aligned super PAC, Senate Leadership Fund, spent over $5 million on attack ads against the Trump-backed Senate candidate Kelly Tshibaka, seeking to unseat incumbent Sen. Lisa Murkowski.
Meanwhile, the McConnell-aligned group canceled $9.6 million in television ads in Arizona, where Democratic Sen. Mark Kelly has since defeated Republican Blake Masters. Trump has been highly critical of that move, an aide told CNN.
Masters has directly blamed McConnell for his defeat, suggesting it was “malice” or “gross incompetence” that caused the senior Republican to largely avoid getting involved in the race.
Related video: How Ron DeSantis rose to the top of the GOPTrump has been expressing his frustrations with McConnell behind the scenes to everyone he has spoken to this week, sources told CNN.
“He isn’t making explicit asks, but he wants to see more Republicans holding Mitch accountable,” a person close to Trump told the outlet.
McConnell has long been the subject of ire for Trump, with the former president repeatedly attacking him and calling for him to be replaced as Senate GOP leader.
Trump has called McConnell a ‘piece of shit’ and an ‘old crow’ in the past, according to The New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman.
With leadership elections due to take place next week, McConnell appears to have shored up support to get the job but is facing growing discontent within the party, with some senators calling for a delay to the vote, NBC reported.
No Republican senator has said they plan to run against McConnell, although Trump has previously suggested that Florida Sen. Rick Scott would be a good replacement.
If elected as leader for another two years, McConnell will become the longest-serving Senate party leader in US history.
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