Sunday, May 7, 2017

The insider and the outsider: McConnell and Trump try for a deal on health care

WaPost/ by Sullivan,Phillip,Kane

President Trump’s administration was still in its first hours when Mitch McConnell snagged an open seat next to him for a private chat at his inaugural luncheon. For more than 15 minutes, McConnell did most of the talking. The new president listened keenly.

Eleven days later, McConnell had a front-row seat as Trump announced Neil M. Gorsuch as his pick for the Supreme Court, the culmination of the Senate majority leader’s advice during the campaign on how to handle the court vacancy: Consult the Federalist Society, and make a list of prospects. Trump did that.

For months, McConnell, the consummate political insider, has been dispensing his counsel to Trump, the ultimate outsider, who has been absorbing the Kentuckian’s words. The dynamic has provided a degree of stability in the still-forming relationship between the low-key Senate leader and the loquacious president, who are starkly different types of people.

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