In the wake of President Donald Trump’s quick acquittal, Mitch McConnell decided to attack President Trump. Perhaps Mitch believed that by disparaging Trump, he could regain control of the Republican party. Mitch failed spectacularly.
Mitch’s Ill-Conceived Floor Speech
Shortly after the verdict of acquittal was rendered, McConnell spoke on the Senate floor. Despite voting against conviction, McConnell stated that Trump was “practically and morally responsible” for the January 6th attack on the Capitol.
Mitch then proceeded to double down, accusing Trump of using underhanded and disingenuous means of trying to overturn the election. He accused the former president of spreading “unhinged falsehoods” regarding possible election fraud. He derided Trump’s actions during the riot as “unconscionable,” seeking to place President Trump in the same company as the rioter’s scaling the walls of the Capitol.
Mitch Failed to Swing the Republican Base
Mitch tried to remove Trump from the power base of the Republican Party for several reasons. Trump supports efforts to primary challenge all RINOs who failed to support his policies and failed to aggressively investigate numerous and credible reports of campaign fraud. Mitch derives much of his support from these RINOs who he has helped to elect and reelect.
Second, with Trump removed from the center of the party, Mitch could set the Republican agenda. He would take credit for winning back the Senate in 2022, which he believes would be easier without combatting Trump and his America First agenda.
In a poll taken after the acquittal, 53% of Republicans preferred President Trump as the party’s 2024 nominee. Trump remains entrenched in the hearts of Republican voters. Mitch’s poor attempt to disparage President Trump will only damage his standing and ensure strong opposition to RINOs in 2022.