By Timothy Gardner
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – US President Donald Trump on Saturday attacked a longtime congressional critic who warned this week that his handling of the coronavirus pandemic and authoritarian leaders could spark a “Republican bloodbath. in the Senate “in the November 3 elections.
US Senator Ben Sasse is the least effective of the 53 Republican senators, Trump wrote on Twitter, calling him “a drag on the Republican Party and an embarrassment to the Great State of Nebraska. Other than that, he’s a wonderful guy.”
Sasse blasted Trump at a town hall with voters on Wednesday and questioned whether the president would ultimately lead the country further to the left.
Trump “kisses dictators’ butts” and has “flirted with white supremacists,” according to a transcript from the virtual city hall. Trump’s leadership through the COVID-19 pandemic has not been “reasonable, responsible or correct,” Sasse said.
He added that Trump refused to take the coronavirus seriously for months and had treated it as a news cycle rather than a multi-year public health challenge.
Sasse is a frequent critic of Trump and said before the 2016 election that he would not back him. Yet he has voted in line with Trump’s positions in Congress nearly 87% of the time, according to a vote count as of Sept. 24 by the fivethirtyeight.com website.
Senate Republicans are fighting to maintain their 53-47 majority in the election. A recent Reuters / Ipsos poll https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-election-senate-poll-idUSKBN26Z312 shows Democratic challenger Mark Kelly ahead of incumbent Republican Martha McSally in Arizona, one of 10 states where Republican rulers are vulnerable to impeachment.
Several, including Trump’s frequent golf partner Senator Lindsey Graham (NYSE :), face funding shortfalls. Democrat Jaime Harrison, who is competing against Graham in South Carolina, has raised nearly $ 58 million during the three-month period ending September 30, more than double the $ 28 million reported by Graham’s campaign.
Democratic candidates in nine hotly contested Senate races racked up https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-election-senate-fundraising/democrat-senate-campaigns-pull-in-more-than-240-million -in-third-quarter-fundraising-idUSKBN2710BO more than $ 240 million in contributions during that period, leaving Republican opponents far behind in fundraising.
This week, Graham expressed concern that Trump, who is behind Democratic candidate Joe Biden in many polls, could lose.
“Everyone has a good chance of winning the White House,” Graham told fellow Democrats during hearings of Amy Coney Barrett, Trump’s nominee for the Supreme Court vacancy left behind by the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
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