In one of his harshest attacks to date on Donald Trump, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said the former president’s clout has “diminished” and called him harmful to the Republican Party.
Trump has created a view of Republicans as “nasty and tended toward chaos,” McConnell said in an interview earlier this week with NBC News in his Capitol Hill office.
McConnell said he will no longer be cowed by Trump’s endorsements and vowed instead to “actively” seek “quality candidates” for 2024.
“Here’s what I think has changed: I think the former president’s political clout has diminished,” McConnell flatly stated.
Trump’s fading power is making Republicans “less inclined to accept cards that may be dealt to us,” McConnell said.
“We can do a better job with less potential interference,” McConnell said. “The former president may have other things to do.”
McConnell blamed Trump for damaging the party’s image among crucial independent and swing voters. He said the GOP underperformed in “every state” in the midterms — including the red state of Ohio, which Republicans narrowly won — and called its performance “fatal” in Arizona, New Hampshire and Georgia.
“We lost support that we needed among independents and moderate Republicans, primarily related to the view they had of us as a party — largely made by the former president — that we were sort of nasty and tended toward chaos,” McConnell said.
Trump has not yet responded to McConnell’s comments.
Check out more of the McConnell interview below: