Donald Trump; Mitch McConnell (Getty/Chip Somodevilla/Zach Gibson)

Mitch McConnell and Donald Trump are not on speaking terms: report

The GOP's congressional agenda is on the brink of disaster, and the president and the Senate leader are not talking


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Taylor Link
September 5, 2017 4:14PM (UTC)

Congress has a lot on its plate this fall, and the highest-ranking official in the legislature is not communicating with the president.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell hasn't met with President Donald Trump in weeks, The Wall Street Journal reported Monday, bringing into question whether the Republican Party is on the same page with its agenda.

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The president has been vocal in recent months in his criticism of Republican lawmakers. He has blamed Congress for its failure to pass a health care bill and has targeted high-profile Republicans such as McConnell, Sens. John McCain and Jeff Flake — both Arizona Republicans.

McConnell has grown frustrated with the president's attention span, the Journal noted. During the health care debate, McConnell and Trump would often speak on the phone, but the president's only real interest were the headlines of the day, or a segment he had seen on cable news. The Journal said that Trump would have to ask if McConnell was still on the line because the Senate majority leader would fall silent while Trump bantered. McConnell would repeatedly have to steer Trump back to policy, according to sources who spoke with the Journal.

One longtime Trump supporter in Congress, Rep. Kevin Cramer of North Dakota, told the Journal that Trump's relationship with the legislative branch was "unhealthy."

Now the president is calling on Congress to pass a bill that would replace DACA. While some members of the GOP in Congress have signaled their support for a bipartisan bill, such as House Republican Conference Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers, others will find it difficult to spurn their populist base which supports the president's cruel immigration proposals.


Taylor Link

Taylor Link is an assistant editor at Salon. You can find him on Twitter at @taylorlink_

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