- McConnell is touting the Biden infrastructure law as a “godsend” in his home state.
- He was one of 19 GOP senators who cast a vote for it in August.
- Trump is stepping up his attacks on McConnell, but the Kentucky Republican seems to be paying little mind.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell is already touting the $550 billion infrastructure law in his home state of Kentucky, lauding the federal money it’s poised to provide for repairing aging bridges and accelerating economic development in rural areas.
“It’s a godsend for Kentucky,” McConnell said on Monday, per CBS News affiliate WKYT. “We have a lot of infrastructure needs.”
Late on Friday, the House approved the infrastructure bill with bipartisan support. Thirteen House Republicans played a crucial role getting the legislation over the finish line after a stretch of chaos among Democrats.
The bill is aimed at renovating America’s aging public works system. It includes $110 billion to repair roads and bridges, highways, and ports, $66 billion to strengthen railways, and $55 billion to replace lead pipes and provide clean drinking water.
The Kentucky Republican was among 19 Republican senators who voted for the infrastructure bill in August. Months of tumultuous negotiations between the White House and a moderate bloc of senators eventually produced legislation that cleared the Senate.
Yet former President Donald Trump has repeatedly slammed the infrastructure bill and urged Republicans to oppose it, arguing it would deliver Biden a major legislative win. He assailed it again on Sunday, singling out McConnell.
“All Republicans who voted for Democrat longevity should be ashamed of themselves, in particular Mitch McConnell, for granting a two month stay which allowed the Democrats time to work things out at our Country’s, and the Republican Party’s, expense!” Trump said in his statement.
But McConnell seems to be paying the former president little mind, much as he has since Trump left office. Trump’s attacks rang hollow among many Senate Republicans over the summer and many dismissed it.
It’s the opposite situation in the House, where Trump holds greater sway among a larger group of conservative lawmakers. Republican leaders in the lower chamber are reportedly steeling themselves against efforts to punish the 13 GOP lawmakers that voted for the bill, such as by stripping them of their committee assignments.