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In Barb Directed at Trump, McConnell Asserts, ‘No Room for Antisemitism or White Supremacy’ in GOP

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Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) speaks at a Capitol Hill press conference. Photo: Reuters / Tom Brenner.

In a thinly veiled barb at former US President Donald Trump, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) declared on Tuesday that anyone with connections to white supremacists and antisemites is is “highly unlikely to ever be elected president of the United States.”

McConnell’s comments came amid increasing speculation that Trump will mount another presidential run in 2024, as well as the continuing fallout over the former president’s dinner last week with the antisemitic hip hop mogul Kanye West and his sidekick Nick Fuentes, a neo-Nazi agitator and unabashed Hitler-worshipper.

Speaking at his weekly news conference, McConnell underlined that there was “no room in the Republican Party for antisemitism or white supremacy.”

“That would apply to all of the leaders in the party who will be seeking offices,” McConnell added.

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Tensions between Trump and McConnell increased in the wake of the Jan. 6, 2020 insurgency on Capitol Hill to overturn Joe Biden’s presidential election victory. McConnell accused Trump of being “practically and morally responsible for provoking the events.” More recently, Trump blamed McConnell for the GOP’s poor showing in the Nov. 2022 midterms.

Despite repeated entreaties from his Jewish allies and Republican Party leaders, Trump has refused to denounce either West or Fuentes. After their dinner at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida, West released a video in which he claimed that Trump had been “really impressed” with Fuentes. Separately, an unnamed source told Axios that during the meal, Trump had pointed to Fuentes and said to West, “I really like this guy. He gets me.”

Meanwhile, West and Fuentes doubled down on their conspiracy-mongering during an appearance on Monday on the podcast of right-wing pundit Tim Pool. When Pool agreed that “they” had treated West unfairly, West responded with a classic antisemitic dog whistle, venturing, “We can’t say who ‘they’ is, can we?”  Pool then specified the “corporate press,” which drew Fuentes to respond,  “It is them, though, isn’t it.” When Pool shot back, “No, it’s not,” West angrily retorted, “What do you mean, it’s not?” before storming out of the studio tailed by both Fuentes and the other guest on the show, the far-right activist Milo Yiannopoulos.

 

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