Sen. Bob Corker claimed to speak for his Republican colleagues in an interview with the New York Times, but some in the Senate are not happy with his decision to pick a fight with President Donald Trump.
“Look, except for a few people, the vast majority of our caucus understands what we’re dealing with here,” Corker told the Times, claiming Trump was viewed as a threat to U.S. national security and global stability.
But a spokesperson for Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY) told Breitbart News that the senator did not agree with what the retiring Corker had to say.
“No, he does not agree with Sen. Corker,” the spokesperson revealed in a statement. “Senator Barrasso has worked closely with President Trump and will continue to be a strong ally in Congress.”
Barrasso is facing re-election in 2018 amidst rumblings of a possible Republican primary challenger.
Some Republicans staffers made it clear that Corker’s comments were self-serving and unhelpful — especially after announcing his decision to retire rather than seek re-election.
“Given his severe case of short man syndrome and the fact he would have lost his primary, it’s not surprising Corker is seeking attention and affirmation from the Beltway elites,” a senior Republican aide working for a Senator on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee told Breitbart News.
Although many Senate Democrats celebrated Corker’s criticism of the president, Republican staffers viewed Corker’s outburst as a bad strategy.
“Senator Corker should not be picking this fight, he won’t win it,” a senior Republican aide for one of Corker’s Senate colleagues told Breitbart News.
Trump allies in Congress explain that Corker has joined what they describe as the “naysayers caucus” — veteran Republicans like Senator John McCain who vote based on their shared dislike of Trump rather than on principled opposition.
Corker’s critics also view the Senator as in league with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and actively working against some of Trump’s more controversial foreign policy goals.
“Corker is Tillerson’s lapdog on the Foreign Relations Committee,” the aide working for a senator on the Corker’s committee told Breitbart News. “Our staff cheered when Corker announced his retirement.”
One Republican aide explained that although many Senators thought Corker’s comments were ridiculous, his fellow senators were unlikely to publicly criticize the powerful veteran senator as they still had to work with him for the remainder of his term.
Many of Republican senators serving with Corker on the Foreign Relations Committee did not respond to requests for comment from Breitbart News.
Although Paul serves with Corker on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, he did not criticize him directly.
“Senator Paul considers President Trump a personal friend and has worked with him on numerous issues,” Rand Paul’s press secretary Sergio Gor replied, when asked about Corker’s comments.
Other conservative Republicans declined to criticize Corker, but signaled their support for Trump.
When asked if Cruz agreed with Corker’s comment a spokesperson for the Texas Senator replied, “No.”
“From day one, Senator Cruz has worked closely with President Trump to honor our promises to the voters to repeal Obamacare, cut taxes, rein in job-killing regulations, and confirm strong constitutionalist judges,” the spokesperson said in a statement to Breitbart News.
When asked about Corker’s comments, Sen. Mike Lee spokesman Conn Carroll replied, “Sen Lee speaks for himself.”
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell reverted to his usual non-combative tone, when asked about Corker’s comments.
“Sen. Corker is a valuable member of the Senate Republican caucus and he’s also on the Budget committee and a particularly important player as we move to the floor on the budget next week and he’s an important part of our team,” McConnell said on Monday.