Former President Trump issued a statement on Thursday blaming Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) and Georgia governor Brian Kemp for the loss of both Georgia Senate seats to Democrats in runoff elections.
Trump pointed to Kemp’s alleged failure to prevent a “rigged election” as an explanation for his own loss and that of the Republican senate candidates. The former president himself lost Georgia by less than 12,000 votes, and he has blamed his loss on massive voter fraud by Democrats.
Allies of the president have failed to prove claims of widespread fraud. Meanwhile, Georgia prosecutors have opened a criminal inquiry into a phone call between Trump and Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, in which Trump asked Raffensperger to “find” additional votes.
Trump also blamed the Georgia loss on McConnell’s refusal to back $2,000 stimulus checks as part of the coronavirus relief bill passed in December.
“This latter point was used against our Senators and the $2,000 will be approved anyway by the Democrats who bought the Georgia election—and McConnell let them do it!” Trump said in his statement.
Trump was apparently responding to a Wall Street Journal editorial published on Monday, suggesting that the former president cost Republicans electorally, including in Georgia where Senators Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue were defeated by Democrats Raphael Warnock and John Ossoff.
McConnell and Trump have clashed after supporters of the former president rioted at the Capitol in early January, injuring dozens of police officers and forcing lawmakers to evacuate the building. The Minority Leader has labeled Trump “practically and morally responsible” for the riot, while Trump blasted McConnell as a “dour, sullen, and unsmiling political hack.”