McConnell and Senate Republicans are showing their true colors.
Senate Republican leaders, headed by Senator Mitch McConnell from Kentucky, are maintaining a notable silence regarding the indictment of former President Trump on 37 criminal charges. This contrasting stance separates them from House Republican leaders who have swiftly come to Trump’s aid, as they choose not to publicly support him and allow him to face the consequences alone.
According to The Hill, Senator McConnell, who exercises caution by refraining from commenting on Trump or even uttering his name in public, has privately expressed his desire to his Republican colleagues for the party to move forward from the former president. McConnell views Trump as a flawed candidate in the general election and believes that his association could negatively impact the prospects of Senate Republican candidates.
The highest-ranking deputies of the Senate GOP leader, Senator John Thune from South Dakota and Senator John Cornyn from Texas, have likewise indicated their lack of support for Trump in securing the party’s presidential nomination in 2024. They have expressed their preference for an alternative candidate to represent the Republican Party in the upcoming election.
In contrast to Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) and House Majority Leader Steve Scalise (R-La.), who publicly criticized the Justice Department prior to the unsealing of the indictment, McConnell, Thune, and Cornyn have chosen not to come to the defense of the former president. They are allowing Trump’s legal challenges to unfold without offering their support, adopting a different approach to McCarthy and Scalise in the House.
According to a former Senate Republican aide, the silence exhibited by Senate Republican leaders regarding Trump’s indictment is motivated by their desire for him to fade from the political scene. The source suggests that these leaders would not be greatly disturbed if the indictment proved to be the catalyst that ultimately removes Trump from the spotlight.
Republican senators displayed a more vocal stance in defense of Trump when liberal Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg unveiled an indictment in early April, accusing Trump of 34 felony counts pertaining to business records fraud.
Even Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) refrained from expressing confidence in Alvin Bragg when questioned about him in late March.