President Donald Trump has yet again blasted the Senate majority leader, Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, for the GOP-majority chamber's inability to pass a repeal or replacement of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Trump's latest statement followed reports that he and McConnell's relationship had frayed over the past month.
On Aug. 24, Trump took to social media to knock McConnell for not corralling enough votes to repeal the ACA.
"The only problem I have with Mitch McConnell is that, after hearing Repeal & Replace for 7 years, he failed!" Trump tweeted out. "That should NEVER have happened!"
The president also blasted both McConnell and the House Majority Leader, GOP Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, for allegedly not heeding his suggestion that they tie a vote on the U.S. debt ceiling to a Veterans Affairs bill.
Meanwhile, McConnell was offering praise for Trump during a speech before the Kentucky State Fair.
"The new justice, Neil Gorsuch, is a good example of the kind of people that President Trump is going to put on the courts," McConnell said, according to the Courier-Journal.
McConnell offered no comment when asked about the president's latest social media missives.
The working relationship between McConnell and Trump began to publicly sour following a GOP proposal to repeal the ACA was defeated in the Senate.
On Aug. 28, McConnell's legislative reputation took a hit when a so-called skinny repeal of the ACA failed to garner 50 votes. GOP Sens. Susan Collins of Alaska, John McCain of Arizona and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska had voted against the bill.
"Yes, this is a disappointment," McConnell said on the Senate floor, according to The Daily Beast. "A disappointment indeed ... Our friends on the other side decided early on they didn't want to engage with us in a serious way to help those suffering Obamacare."
On Aug. 8, McConnell pushed back against accusations that his GOP-majority in the Senate was unproductive.
"Part of the reason I think that the storyline is that we haven't done much is because, in part, the president and others have set these early timelines about things need to be done by a certain point ... I think [Trump] had excessive expectations about how quickly things happen in the democratic process," McConnell said during a club event in Kentucky, according to ABC News.
On Aug. 9, Trump took to social media to voice his displeasure with McConnell's comments.
"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 out.
On Aug. 22, several sources close to both McConnell and Trump alleged that they had not spoken in weeks. The president and Senate majority leader had reportedly developed an intense hostility toward each other after a heated phone call about health care and federal probe into Russia's role during the election, according to The New York Times.
McConnell was reportedly telling advisers that he was unsure whether Trump could recover from his controversial press conference on Aug. 15, when the president asserted that white nationalists and counter protesters shared equal blame for the violence at a rally in Charlottesville, Virginia.
One GOP senator who requested anonymity asserted that a Trump-McConnell feud would only prompt congressional Republicans to turn against the president.
"I think it has the effect of really bringing down members behind McConnell," the senator told CNN.
A GOP Senate aide added: "Every Republican wants this President to succeed, and are desperately trying to assist him, but he can't help but indulge in his own self-destructive habits."
On Aug. 24, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders asserted that both McConnell and Trump enjoyed a healthy working relationship.
"Certainly I think there are going to be some policy differences, but there are also a lot of shared goals," Sanders told reporters at the White House.
Sources: ABC News, CNN, Courier-Journal, The Daily Beast, Donald J. Trump/Twitter, The New York Times / Featured Image: Gage Skidmore/Flickr / Embedded Images: U.S. Department of Agriculture/Flickr, Gage Skidmore/Flickr