Schumer: Relationship with Republicans getting better

Schumer: Relationship with Republicans getting better
© Greg Nash

Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) said relationships between Democrats and Republicans in Congress are improving, but he said he feels the White House has not done enough to support lawmakers.

"We are actually working together in a pretty good way," Schumer told radio host John Catsimatidis in an interview that aired Sunday. "I think this will happen more and more and more."

"Our Republican friends, I think, want to work with us. I think sometimes the president gets in the way of that. But I think you are going to see us working together more and more," he repeated. "I have even gotten [Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellBiden's bipartisan deal faces Senate gauntlet The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Biden sets new vaccine mandate as COVID-19 cases surge Democrats warn shrinking Biden's spending plan could backfire MORE (R-Ky.)] to laugh at my jokes."

Schumer pointed at U.S. trade policy with China as one issue that could bridge the gap between Democrats in Congress and the Trump administration.

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The New York Democrat even remarked that he was "closer" to Trump on the issue than he was to former Presidents Obama or George W. Bush.

"I was closer in trade policy to Donald Trump than I was to George Bush and Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaMillennial momentum means trouble for the GOP Biden's Cuba problem: Obama made a bet and lost Democrats need a coherent response to attacks on critical race theory MORE," Schumer remarked. He added that he wants Trump to follow through on his campaign rhetoric to stand up to China economically.

Trump has repeatedly accused China of ripping the U.S. off economically with currency manipulation and steel dumping.

"Months ago I spoke to President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump PACs brought in over M for the first half of 2021 Chicago owes Trump M tax refund, state's attorney mounts legal challenge Biden hits resistance from unions on vaccine requirement MORE and I said, ‘You should get tough on China on trade,'" Schumer said in the interview. "Trade is the thing they care about, and they have been treating us very badly on trade for a long time, frankly.

"If we got tough on them now, maybe they would relent," he added. "So far, the administration has not been as tough as they should be."