During an interview with ABC News‘ George Stephanopoulos broadcast earlier this week, President Trump suggested that he would accept damaging information about a political opponent, even if it came from a foreign adversary, prompting widespread criticism and outrage.
Trump added that he would likely not report the interaction to the FBI, which led to his comments being interpreted as an open invitation to bad actors to meddle in American elections. Trump’s comments were apparently so outrageous that even some Republican lawmakers — such as Lindsey Graham — are urging the commander-in-chief to clarify his remarks.
But Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell does not think that way. In an interview with Fox News broadcast Friday, McConnell refused to condemn Trump’s comments about accepting foreign dirt, Newsweek reports.
The top Republican dismissed the concerns, pivoting to slamming the Democratic Party. The Democrats, according to the Senate Majority Leader, have still not come to terms with the fact that Trump is president, which is why they are still focused on foreign election meddling and Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation.
“They just can’t let it go, Laura,” McConnell told Fox News’ Laura Ingraham.
“I said weeks ago, case closed. We got the Mueller report, the only objective evaluation that will be conducted…. He gets picked at every day over every different aspect of it.”
Mueller found no proof of a Trump-Russia conspiracy, writing extensively in his report about Russian election interference efforts. The special counsel’s office also refused to charge the president with obstruction of justice, choosing to adhere to longstanding Justice Department policy according to which no sitting president can be indicted.
The Republicans have, since the publication of Mueller’s report, attempted to move away from the issue, but the Democrats have only doubled down, vowing more investigations and taking legal action.
According to McConnell, the Democrats are “trying to keep the 2016 election alive and the investigation alive when the American people have heard enough.”
“They got the Mueller report; they would like for us to do some business. I would ask the Democrats in the House this: Is there anything you’re willing to do other than harass the President for the next two years? Anything at all?” he said.
As Newsweek notes, some Democrats are using Trump’s comments to call for impeachment. Notably, Democratic presidential candidates Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren both renewed calls for impeachment, but their endorsement of the procedure means nothing unless top Democrats such as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi get behind the idea.
Pelosi remains adamantly opposed to impeaching Trump, however.