Former United States President Donald Trump reportedly spoke with several Republican senators and political allies in an effort to replace Minority Leader Mitch McConnell from the Senate in an attempted ousting plan.
However, despite Trump's desperate efforts, there seems to be little support for his plan, but the impacts of his actions could possibly transform into a larger controversy for the Republican party. The incident comes as the Kentucky Republican aims to retake control of the Senate majority in the 2022 midterm elections.
Trump Against McConnell
While Trump and McConnell had close ties during the Republican businessman's presidency, working together on federal court vacancies, passing the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, other GOP projects, and Trump's refusal to concede his 2020 presidential election loss to Joe Biden has strained his relationship with McConnell.
McConnell refused to consider Trump guilty after the latter's second Senate impeachment trial for his alleged involvement in the Jan. 6 Capitol Hill riot. However, the Senate Minority Leader rebuked the Republican businessman on the Senate floor. McConnell later announced his support of Trump if he was to run in 2024 as the GOP presidential nominee, Business Insider reported.
Trump has not forgiven the minority leader for his speech on the Senate floor condemning the former president. The Republican has continued to pressure McConnell, recently criticizing him for the latter's support of the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure passage that the Senate passed last month, which he called a "disgrace."
During McConnell's speech in the Senate regarding Trump's role in the Jan. 6 Capitol riot, he said, "There's no question, none, that President Trump is practically and morally responsible for provoking the events of the day. No question about it. The people that stormed this building believed they were acting on the wishes and instructions of their president."
In an interview in April, Trump said GOP members needed a new leader in the Senate, arguing that McConnell was not able to do a good job. He expressed his support of replacing the minority leader. For years, Trump said that he had been quietly saying that McConnell was the most "overrated" man he has ever seen in politics, The Hill reported.
Lack of Support From Allies
Republicans risk being split up due to some supporting Trump in his oust plan while others remain loyal to McConnell. But Trump's allies said they were doubtful of the Republican businessman's plan to oust the minority leader. Sen. John Kennedy said, "I just don't realistically see that happening."
Sen. Tommy Tuberville, one of Trump's allies, was hesitant to join the former president in his efforts to oust McConnell, saying, "Naw, I'm not going to get in that fight." He was previously one of the Republican businessman's top allies in the Senate. Even officials Trump endorsed have shown little support for his desire to remove the minority leader from his position.
One of McConnell's alleged failures to support Trump was when he refused to join the former president in his efforts to prove widespread voter fraud during the 2020 presidential elections, Slate reported.