Trump Holds Surprise Press Conference With Mitch McConnell
President Trump’s former chief strategist, Steve Bannon, recently declared war on the GOP establishment and threw his support behind populist candidates who plan to run against incumbents in the 2018 elections.
‘There’s a time and season for everything, and right now it’s a season of war against the GOP establishment.’
Trump responded to Bannon’s remarks during a cabinet meeting on Monday by saying that he “can understand where Bannon is coming from.”
‘We are not getting the job done. And I am not going to blame myself, they are not getting the job done. We had health care approved, and then you had the surprise vote by John McCain. We have had other things happen and they are not getting the job done and I can understand where Steve Bannon is coming from.’
Shortly after Trump made the above statement, though, he joined McConnell for an impromptu press conference in the Rose Garden, the purpose of which seems to have been to prove that the two men don’t totally hate each other.
Trump began the press conference by claiming that McConnell are has been a friend of his “for a long time” and that they are “fighting for the same thing.”
‘My relationship with this gentleman is outstanding, has been outstanding.’
The president also said that Republicans are “close” on health care legislation and said they are working together on tax reform.
Meanwhile, McConnell said that he and Trump “have the same agenda.”
‘We’re together totally on this agenda to move America forward.’
He also told reporters that he and the president have “been friends and acquaintances for a long time” and added that they talk frequently on the weekends.
McConnell also addressed the 2018 midterm elections — in response to questions about Bannon’s plans to unseat establishment Republicans — and said that it is important to support Republicans who can win in November.
‘Winners make policy and losers go home.’
Trump said that, with his war on the GOP, Bannon is doing what he “thinks is the right thing.” He also said that he will try to talk Bannon out of campaigning against some Senate Republicans.
Watch a livestream of the conference below, via YouTube.