Trump Fires Back at McConnell Criticism, Scolds Him Over Obamacare Repeal Failure

Posted August 11, 2017

The top Republican in the Senate was the first to throw down the gauntlet this week, saying back home in Kentucky that it was Trump's political inexperience that led to him setting "excessive expectations" over wanting to speedily repeal Obamacare.

Trump offered a congratulatory tweet for McConnell's victory in the 2014 Republican primary race, as the five-term senator defeated tea party-backed challenger Matt Bevin.

This is the second time in as many days that Trump has come after McConnell for the failure of the health care bill. "You can do it!"

The White House has not yet responded to ABC News' request for comment.

Trump repeatedly implored Republicans in Congress to keep their long-held promise regarding the health care law, but three GOP defections last month stalled the effort. But they continue to butt heads with a White House that's unhappy with where they left the health care debate. Trump even cautioned the state of Kentucky not to "blow it" on McConnell's senatorial aspirations.

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McConnell, at the time, was pushing for a vote on a motion to proceed with the GOP health care plan, yet was facing growing uncertainty from several Republican lawmakers, including Sens.

"Discerning a particular strategy or goal from these tweets is hard", said Doug Heye, a Republican consultant and former Capitol Hill staffer. His targets have begun to narrow, and the Majority Leader of the Senate is firmly in his crosshairs.

"It hurts the process moving forward, not just on Obamacare but on anything that will be contentious, and clearly there are going to be a lot of contentious issues in the coming weeks", Heye told Reuters. It's why he tried to fast-walk the legislation before the July 4 congressional recess so he could move on to tax reform, where he's said there's more opportunity for a win.

Meanwhile, Dan Scavino Jr., President Trump's director of social media, compounded the Commander-in-Chief's criticisms for McConnell. McConnell. "Obviously there's some frustration". The party holds a slim majority in the 100-seat chamber.

It's unclear why, in a moment of global crisis, the commander in chief might focus on his own party's failings, but it may have something to do with his alleged obsession with undoing Obama's legacy, much of which is defined by the ACA, his landmark health care legislation. "It's pretty obvious on health care our problem was not the Democrats", McConnell said on August 1.