Senate Majority Whip John CornynJohn CornynAngst in GOP over Trump's trade agenda Republicans play clean up on Trump's foreign policy Comey meets Intel senators amid uproar over Trump-Russia ties MORE (R-Texas) suggested Friday that if Donald TrumpDonald TrumpEx-CIA analyst resigns rather than serve Trump administration Matt Schlapp op-ed: Challenges, controversy won't stop CPAC 2017 Anti-Trump protests swell outside Parliament during debate on official visit MORE wins the White House, he'll need a Republican-controlled Congress to approve his policies.
"If Mr. Trump does become the president of the United States, he's going to need a Republican majority to govern," the Senate's No. 2 Republican said on "The Mark Davis Show."
"And I think he would welcome working with Republican majorities in the House and the Senate to move his and the country's agenda forward."
Republican senators have walked a fine line as Trump has risen to the top of the GOP presidential pack.
While many have denounced some of the businessman's policies, they've been wary of cutting ties completely with him or the conservative voters they'll need to keep control of the Senate in November, when Republicans are defending 24 seats.
Majority Leader Mitch McConnellMitch McConnellThe Trump Administration has definitely not drained the swamp How does placing sanctions on Russia help America? THE MEMO: Trump's wild first month MORE (R-Ky.), in particular, has tried to keep the Senate separate from the battle within the Republican presidential field, sidestepping questions about the race on a weekly basis. But the Republican leader told reporters this week that he had spoken with Trump, and suggested that he discouraged violence at his rallies.
Democrats have spent weeks tying GOP senators to their party's front-runner and quickly pounced on Cornyn's comments.
Sen. Charles SchumerCharles SchumerOvernight Cybersecurity: Trump defends Flynn, blasts leaks | Yahoo fears further breach Overnight Finance: Trump's Labor pick withdraws | Ryan tries to save tax plan | Trump pushes tax reform with retailers Democrats declare victory after Puzder bows out MORE (D-N.Y.), expected to be the next Senate Democratic leader, said the Texas Republican "has committed a gaffe by telling the truth."
"Donald Trump and Senate Republicans share the same agenda, and Senate Republicans who are obstructing on the Supreme Court are doing everything they can to make sure that Trump chooses the next justice," he said. "Donald Trump won't make America great again, but he will make Republicans the minority again."
Democrats frequently predict a Trump nomination would negatively affect the already tough reelection campaigns for a handful of Republican senators.
Lauren Passalacqua, a spokeswoman for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, said "those running for U.S. Senate will have to answer not only for their own out-of-touch records but also for Trump's offensive statements, radical policies and hateful rhetoric. ... The Republican Party is now the party of Trump."
Cornyn, however, on Friday suggested that Trump or Ted CruzTed CruzTrump to speak at CPAC Trump to interview four candidates for national security adviser Milo Yiannopoulos to speak at CPAC MORE as the party's nominee could help bolster voter turnout in November, but he acknowledged the presidential election will affect congressional elections "because it's very hard for senators and congressman to separate themselves from the national conversations and trends."
"Hillary's such a flawed candidate," he said. "I think this is a great opportunity for us, and I just hope we don't blow it."