Report: Trump, McConnell Got Into 'Profane Shouting Match' Over the Phone

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell / Getty Images
August 22, 2017

President Donald Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) got into a "profane shouting match" over the phone earlier this month when the president called to berate McConnell over the failure of the Obamacare repeal effort.

Trump and McConnell's relationship has devolved into a "feud of mutual resentment and sometimes outright hostility," according to the New York Times. Their clash has been further complicated by McConnell's wife, Elaine Chao, serving as Trump's secretary of transportation.

Trump sent out a series of tweets attacking McConnell after the latter said Aug. 7 that Trump had "excessive expectations" on legislation and noted the president's relatively minimal political experience.

According to the Times, Trump called McConnell on Aug. 9 and criticized him over the July 28 health care bill collapse. Trump additionally attacked McConnell for not sufficiently protecting him from the ongoing Russia investigation:

In a series of tweets this month, Mr. Trump criticized Mr. McConnell publicly, then berated him in a phone call that quickly devolved into a profane shouting match.

During the call, which Mr. Trump initiated on Aug. 9 from his New Jersey golf club, the president accused Mr. McConnell of bungling the health care issue. He was even more animated about what he intimated was the Senate leader’s refusal to protect him from investigations of Russian interference in the 2016 election, according to Republicans briefed on the conversation.

Trump also told reporters that week that he was "very disappointed in Mitch."

McConnell's spokesman told the Times that the two men still share goals like tax reform, infrastructure, funding the government, and not defaulting on the debt.

However, McConnell has privately fumed about Trump's attacks on Republicans like the three senators who voted against the Obamacare repeal bill, as well as Sens. Dean Heller (R., Nev.) and Jeff Flake (R., Ariz.), who face re-election battles in 2018.

McConnell also "expressed horror" to his advisers about Trump's response to the white supremacist violence in Charlottesville, Va.