Trump: My Relationship With McConnell Is 'Very Good'
He insists that despite reports, they are 'closer than ever before'
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 16, 2017 3:50 PM CDT
Journalist raise their hands as they wait to called on to ask a question to President Donald Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Ky., in the Rose Garden of the White House, Monday, Oct....   (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

(Newser) – Relations are reportedly chilly between President Trump and Mitch McConnell, but after their private meeting Monday, Trump told reporters he and the Senate majority leader have "been friends for a long time" and are now, "despite what we read ... closer than ever before. And the relationship is very good." He later referred, twice, to their relationship as "outstanding." Trump has reportedly been upset over the lack of movement on his legislative agenda, Politico reports, but on Monday he insisted he and McConnell are "fighting for the same thing," including tax cuts and health care reform.

Trump was light on specifics but did offer up one policy tidbit: "I’m going to be surprising some people with an economic development bill later on, but I haven’t even told Mitch because I want to focus on tax cuts and some other things right now." McConnell "maintained a neutral facial expression" during that portion of the proceedings, per Politico, and then told reporters, "I want to underscore what the president said: We have the same agenda. We’ve been friends and acquaintances for a long time. We talk frequently. We don’t give you a readout every time we have a conversation." Former Trump adviser Steve Bannon has declared war on McConnell and other sitting Republicans; per CNN, Trump said he was going to "try to talk him out" of some of his targets.

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