Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on Thursday reiterated that the U.S. Postal Service “is not in trouble and ballots will be delivered on time.” (Aug. 20)
In a reversal, Mitch McConnell’s campaign said Thursday that the Senate Majority leader will tape remarks for Republican National Convention, hours after an aide announced he would not have a speaking role at the event.
“Sen. McConnell is submitting taped remarks, and there was a miscommunication,” a McConnell campaign source, who asked for anonymity in order to speak freely, told USA TODAY.
Earlier, McConnell campaign spokeswoman Kate Cooksey said in a statement on that the Senate Majority Leader would be “traveling across all corners of Kentucky next week to speak with families, workers and job creators about their needs.”
Cooksey later emailed saying she was “withdrawing” her previous statement.
“There was a miscommunication,” she said.
McConnell, R-Ky., is the face of the GOP in Congress as the leader of its 53-47 majority in the Senate, which Democrats hope to seize in this year’s election. He has worked closely with President Donald Trump in appointing dozens of conservative judges to the federal bench.
While McConnell and Trump have worked closely on judicial appointments and many other issues, the president expressed frustration with McConnell this week over the timing of hearings on the U.S. Postal Service.
The Republican-controlled Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee is set to hear testimony from Postmaster General Louis DeJoy on Friday amid a controversy over operational changes DeJoy has made that Democrats blame for delays in mail deliveries.
“Let them hold them NOW (during their Convention) or after our Convention is over,” Trump said in a Tweet on Wednesday that tagged McConnell’s Twitter handled. “Always playing right into their hands!”
During the Democratic virtual convention elevating former Vice President Joe Biden as the party’s nominee this week several congressional Democrats, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, had speaking roles.
Kentucky attorney John David Dyche, who wrote a McConnell biography in 2009, speculated via Twitter that it might be a sign the GOP leader wants to put distance between himself and the president.
“To be clear, McConnell wants Trump to lose (and) the GOP to somehow hold the Senate,” Dyche wrote in a tweet Thursday. “That would make him the top Republican (and) Biden would be the ideal Democratic president for him to do some legacy-salvaging last-term deals with. But he can’t completely cut the cord with Trump…yet.”
McConnell’s campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Dyche’s comment.
Reporter Phillip M. Bailey can be reached at pbailey@USAToday.com. Follow him on Twitter at @phillipmbailey.
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