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Trump blows fuse over GOP moving forward on infrastructure deal

Former President Trump lashed out at Senate Republicans on Thursday after the upper chamber voted to take up debate on a bipartisan infrastructure package, accusing Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and "RINOs," short for "Republicans in name only," of surrendering to Democrats.

"Under the weak leadership of Mitch McConnell, Senate Republicans continue to lose," Trump said in a statement. "He lost Arizona, he lost Georgia, he ignored Election Fraud and he doesn't fight." 

"Now he's giving Democrats everything they want and getting nothing in return," he continued. "No deal is better than a bad deal. Fight for America, not for special interests and Radical Democrats. RINOs are ruining America, right alongside Communist Democrats."  

The former president's attack on his party's Senate leadership came a day after lawmakers voted 67-32 to greenlight a debate on the infrastructure deal, which includes $1.2 trillion for projects such as roads, bridges, public transit and broadband internet. The $1.2 trillion includes $579 billion in new spending.

While the infrastructure deal still faces a series of legislative hurdles, Wednesday's vote was seen as a major win for President Biden, who had championed the negotiations between a bipartisan group of senators. 

"This deal signals to the world that our democracy can function, deliver, and do big things. As we did with the transcontinental railroad and the interstate highway, we will once again transform America and propel us into the future," Biden said in a statement. 

The vote is also likely to raise questions about Trump's influence over the policymaking process in his post-presidency. Prior to Wednesday's vote, he had pushed Republicans to reject a deal with Democrats, saying that the compromise is "a loser for the USA, a terrible deal, and makes the Republicans look weak, foolish, and dumb."

"It shouldn't be done," he said. "It sets an easy glidepath for Dems to then get beyond what anyone thought was possible in future legislation." 

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