No. 2 Senate Republican backs McConnell in Trump fight
© Keren Carrion

Sen. John CornynJohn CornynManchin wrestles with progressive backlash in West Virginia O'Rourke's rise raises hopes for Texas Dems down ballot Five takeaways from Cruz, O'Rourke debate showdown MORE (R-Texas) became the latest Republican to throw his support behind Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellEx-lawmaker urges Americans to publicly confront officials Manchin wrestles with progressive backlash in West Virginia Democrats slide in battle for Senate MORE (R-Ky.) following a string of attacks from President Trump.

"Passing POTUS's legislative agenda requires a team effort. No one is more qualified than Mitch McConnell to lead Senate in that effort," Cornyn, the No. 2 Senate Republican, said on Twitter on Friday.

Pressed by a Texas journalist if congressional Republicans were starting to break from Trump, Cornyn said his remarks were a "call for unity."

"As Benjamin Frankliin said: we can hang together or hang separately," he tweeted.


Cornyn's comments come as other GOP senators publicly offered their support for McConnell on Thursday after the president argued the Senate leader is failing to pass the GOP legislative agenda. 

Other senators also backed McConnell on Friday. Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) told the Lexington Herald-Leader that he still supports McConnell.

Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) tweeted her support, calling McConnell "uniquely qualified" to lead Senate Republicans, adding that she looked "forward to continuing to work with him to advance policies that benefit" her state.

Sen. Bob CorkerRobert (Bob) Phillips CorkerLawmakers point fingers at Saudi crown prince in Khashoggi's death Corker calls for 'collective' response from Western countries if Saudi crown prince found responsible in Khashoggi's death The Memo: Trump in a corner on Saudi Arabia MORE (R-Tenn.) added that "from health care to tax reform to infrastructure, tough issues to tackle this fall,” there were “none better than [McConnell] to get a good outcome."

Sen. Pat RobertsCharles (Pat) Patrick RobertsEvangelical leader: Not worth risking ties with Saudi Arabia over missing journalist GOP loads up lame-duck agenda as House control teeters Congress allows farm bill to lapse before reauthorization deadline MORE (R-Kan.) called McConnell "a great champion for farmers [and] ranchers" and said they would work "side-by-side" on the upcoming farm bill. Meanwhile, Sen. Johnny IsaksonJohn (Johnny) Hardy IsaksonTrump renews attacks against Tester over VA nominee on eve of Montana rally House conservatives want ethics probe into Dems' handling of Kavanaugh allegations Senate eyes Kavanaugh floor vote next week MORE (R-Ga.) added Republicans need McConnell's "leadership and a unified Republican Party to continue delivering results to all."

Sen. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsManchin wrestles with progressive backlash in West Virginia Conservatives bankrolled and dominated Kavanaugh confirmation media campaign The Hill's Morning Report — Presented by the Coalition for Affordable Prescription Drugs — Health care a top policy message in fall campaigns MORE (R-Maine) tweeted that McConnell "enjoys broad support in our Caucus,"  while Sen. Todd YoungTodd Christopher YoungMnuchin pulls out of Saudi conference On The Money: Treasury official charged with leaking info on ex-Trump advisers | Trump to seek 5 percent budget cut from Cabinet members | Mnuchin to decide by Thursday on attending Saudi conference Mnuchin to decide by Thursday whether to attend Saudi conference MORE (R-Ind.) said without McConnell's leadership, "Republicans don't have Neil Gorsuch on Supreme Court."

Sen. Cory GardnerCory Scott GardnerElection Countdown: Small-donor donations explode | Russian woman charged with midterm interference | Takeaways from North Dakota Senate debate | O'Rourke gives 'definitive no' to 2020 run | Dems hope Latino voters turn Arizona blue Democrats must end mob rule GOP senators praise Haley as 'powerful' and 'unafraid' MORE (R-Colo.), who heads up the Senate GOP campaign arm, said McConnell has "the confidence of the conference to lead. I have no doubt that, working together, we'll show a better future for all."

The president appeared to threaten McConnell on Thursday, suggesting the Senate majority leader might want to consider stepping down if he can't pass the GOP legislative agenda including ObamaCare repeal, tax reform and infrastructure.

Trump's comments came after three tweets during the past two days firing back at McConnell for his comments at a Rotary Club in Kentucky that the president had "excessive expectations" about moving the GOP agenda.

"Our new president has of course not been in this line of work before and I think had excessive expectations about how quickly things happen in the democratic process,” McConnell said earlier this week.

Republicans failed to pass a "skinny" ObamaCare repeal proposal in a 49-51 vote late last month.

Despite the blow McConnell still has strong support within the Senate Republican Conference.

Several GOP senators publicly voiced frustrations about the closed-door process on healthcare, but they stopped well short of questioning McConnell's status as majority leader.

This story was updated at 12:40 p.m.