Trump says Republicans could have kept the White House if Mitch McConnell and Kevin McCarthy had ‘fought harder’

Mitch McConnell Kevin McCarthy White House

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) address reporters outside the White House. Drew Angerer/Getty Images

  • Former President Trump said that McConnell and McCarthy could have “fought harder” for Republicans.

  • “Now they don’t have anything,” he said in an interview with ABC News correspondent Jonathan Karl.

  • While Trump remains in contact with McCarthy, he has shunned McConnell from his orbit.

Throughout former President Donald Trump’s last weeks in office, he fought for ways to overturn the election results, baselessly alleging that the 2020 results were fraudulent despite repeated losses in court.

However, Trump has not only reserved harsh judgment for President Joe Biden and the Democrats who control Congress, but also key Republicans – including Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, whom he has lambasted for months, and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy of California, who hopes to ascend to the speakership after the 2022 midterm elections.

During an interview with ABC News Chief Washington Correspondent Jonathan Karl, Trump said that the two men didn’t do enough to keep Republicans in control of the White House, despite the former president’s clear election loss.

“If McConnell and McCarthy fought harder, okay, you could have a Republican president right now, and now they don’t have anything,” Trump said during the conversation in an audio clip from March 2021 released in advance of Karl’s forthcoming book, “Betrayal: The Final Act of the Trump Show.”

Despite the criticism, McCarthy has kept a presence in the Trumpworld orbit, beginning with a trip to the former president’s residence at Mar-a-Lago just weeks after Trump supporters violently stormed the US Capitol on January 6 to try and stop the presidential vote’s certification.

Earlier this year, the GOP leader also walked back one of his most direct critiques of Trump.

As the House was voting to impeach Trump for “incitement of insurrection” earlier this year, McCarthy expressed that “the president bears responsibility” for the siege.

On January 21, McCarthy then pivoted and said that Trump did not initiate the insurrection.

“I don’t believe he provoked it if you listen to what he said at the rally,” McCarthy said at the time.

During an interview that aired on Jan. 24, he went on to say that “everybody across this country has some responsibility” for the attack.

McCarthy has since been publicly committed to the former president’s political efforts for 2022 and beyond.

However, McConnell has not spoken with the former president in months, especially after the veteran lawmaker blasted the former president’s January 6-related conduct.

Trump, who has been an ally to GOP presidents for decades, has even been making calls to advocate for McConnell’s ouster as Senate Republican leader, but so far, he hasn’t had much success, according to The Wall Street Journal.

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