Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellDole in final column: 'Too many of us have sacrificed too much' Schumer steps on the gas to move Biden agenda Hoyer says Dec. 15 is drop-dead deadline to hike debt ceiling MORE (R-Ky.) mocked a reporter's question on the GOP tax bill Wednesday, saying he understood the reporter's job "is to use the Democratic talking points."
"What do you say to Sen. [Charles] Schumer [D-N.Y] when he says that you guys are going to rue the day that you pass this bill, that the politics of passing long-term corporate tax cuts with short-term individual cuts is going to catch up to you guys?" NBC's Frank Thorp asked McConnell.
"Your job is to use the Democratic talking points, I understand that," McConnell said during the press conference on Capitol Hill.
McConnell's response comes as the Senate and House passed the sweeping tax-reform bill on Wednesday and as two major polls released this week show mixed results in terms of gaining public support.
A Politico/Morning Consult poll released Tuesday shows 42 percent of voters polled support the legislation while 39 percent oppose, and a CNN poll showed 55 percent of respondents opposed and 33 percent supported the plan.
"Look, we believe that this product will do two extremely important things for the country: No. 1, provide middle-class tax relief, and No. 2, provide business changes that make us more competitive," McConnell continued.
"With regard to the termination dates, let me tell you what terminates this tax cut. The Democrats taking the Congress next November would turn this into a very short tax bill, so I think focusing on dates that may expire because of the need to fit the reconciliation rules miss the point," McConnell said. "Every single Democrat voted for this. They’re all committed to repealing and raising taxes on the American people. That’s what’s at stake in the fall of 2018.”
No Democrats in either the House or Senate voted for the bill, setting up the country's economic performance as a major issue in the 2018 midterm elections.
McConnell echoed his sentiment on the "left of center" press in an interview with The Hill on Tuesday.
“Anytime you come out with a new proposal, at least new to the public, it gets beat up a lot. Most of the press, left of center, hit it pretty hard. Of course, the Democrats all doubled down against it,” he said, adding that the debate over the tax bill will be settled next fall during the midterm elections.
“The argument is still being made,” he said. “We’re confident this is a good issue to take to the American people.”
“Those other guys didn’t see it that way,” he added, in reference to the Democrats. “One of us, I guess, will be proved wrong next fall.”
- This report was updated at 5:26 p.m.