President Trump on Wednesday fired back at Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellMitch McConnellFive tough decisions for the GOP on healthcare McConnell on healthcare failure: ‘Feel better, Hillary Clinton could be president’ George Will warns ‘grotesque’ is becoming normal for GOP MORE after the Kentucky Republican vented his frustrations about the president’s “excessive expectations” for his agenda.
“Senator Mitch McConnell said I had ‘excessive expectations,’ but I don’t think so. After 7 years of hearing Repeal & Replace, why not done?” Trump tweeted from his New Jersey golf course, where he is on vacation.
Senator Mitch McConnell said I had “excessive expectations,” but I don’t think so. After 7 years of hearing Repeal & Replace, why not done?
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 9, 2017
It’s remarkable for a president to criticize a congressional leader from his own party, and Trump’s comment is a sign of the growing intraparty rift between the White House and Capitol Hill.
McConnell earlier this week criticized Trump’s “artificial deadlines” during the healthcare debate.
“Now our new president has of course not been in this line of work before. And I think had excessive expectations about how quickly things happen in the democratic process,” McConnell said.
A McConnell spokesman declined to respond to the president’s tweet on Wednesday.
Trump’s tweet comes weeks after the Senate failed to pass legislation repealing ObamaCare. During the process, Trump and his GOP allies often were not on the same page.
If the finger pointing continues, it could endanger the president’s effort to pass a major overhaul of the tax code by year’s end.
The squabbling could also shadow two must-pass votes when Congress returns to Washington in September: a government-funding bill and a measure to extend the Treasury Department’s borrowing authority.
Frustration with Congress has spread among Trump and his allies ever since the late July failure on healthcare.
“More excuses. @SenateMajLdr must have needed another 4 years – in addition to the 7 years — to repeal and replace Obamacare,” White House social media Dan Scavino tweeted earlier Wednesday, in language the president mimicked in his own tweet.
Fox News host Sean Hannity, a vocal Trump backer, lambasted McConnell as “WEAK” and “SPINELESS” in a late Tuesday night tweet.
The dispute highlights the differences between Trump and McConnell. The former business mogul’s off-the-cuff style and desire for quick action contrasts with the longtime Senate leader’s deliberate style. Though they have not leveled such direct criticisms of one another, the Senate leader has in the past urged the president to tweet less in order to maintain a unified message.
Despite all that, Trump gave McConnell a boost just one day earlier when he endorsed Sen. Luther Strange (R-Ala.) in his special election race against two conservative challengers. McConnell has signaled Strange is his pick in the GOP primary.
But Trump’s frustration appears to be boiling over during his 17-day summer vacation in Bedminster, N.J.
He issued a provocative warning to North Korean leader Kim Jong Un after reports emerged that the rouge regime has developed a nuclear warhead that can fit atop a missile.
“He has been very threatening beyond a normal state, and as I said they will be met with fire, fury and frankly power, the likes of which this world has never seen before,” Trump said Tuesday.
This story was updated at 2:51 p.m.