Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell wants to have his cake and eat it too when it comes to Trump’s reckless trade policy.
Just last week, McConnell said it was a bad idea for Trump to put tariffs on imported goods from Mexico, and that tariffs are nothing more than a tax on American consumers.
On Tuesday, however, McConnell said Trump deserves credit for threatening to impose the tariffs — because, he falsely claimed, the threats helped Trump get a deal with Mexico on the Central American migrant crisis.
“The president deserves applause — not condemnation — for the outcome, which has a good chance of solving this crisis at the border,” McConnell said Tuesday on conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt’s show.
Of course, the only real “outcome” of the tariff threat was that Trump claimed a months-old deal with Mexico on immigration enforcement was actually new.
And, after Trump was exposed for having actually gained nothing from his reckless tariff threat, Trump claimed there was some sort of “secret” agreement that he hasn’t yet announced.
Mexico’s foreign minister denied that any secret deal exists.
Yet that hasn’t stopped McConnell from sticking by Trump’s side on the tariff debacle.
“I think the cold, hard reality is, even though almost none of my members were enthusiastic about the prospect of tariffs, you have to give the president credit — it worked,” McConnell told Hewitt.
The reality is, Trump doesn’t deserve credit for anything.
He created a problem and had to find a way to back out of it without looking like a wimp for caving.
McConnell likely knows this. But his power is tied to Trump’s fortunes, as he cannot afford to lose support from the GOP base that still largely backs Trump.
For McConnell, power trumps principle every time.
Published with permission of The American Independent. Attribution: Emily Singer.