Trump And Mitch McConnell Come Together, For Right Now

President Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell faced reporters side by side on Monday amid the stagnation of the Republican congressional agenda and a looming civil war over Republican Senate candidates.

Both Trump and McConnell made clear that they would work to wave Steve Bannon, Trump's former chief strategist, off races where a contested GOP primary may yield a candidate who can't win in a general election. The two leaders — at odds for weeks over tactics, pace, and priorities — projected unity on agenda items from tax reform to healthcare, promising speedy results in the dwindling number of days left on the year's legislative calendar.

McConnell came to the White House at the president's invitation. Vice President Mike Pence, chief of staff John Kelly, and White House legislative director Marc Short had pressed for a public detente between Trump and McConnell, a Republican close to the White House told the Washington Examiner.

"Their differences are never going to be quelled. McConnell is an institutionalist, and Trump is a shot against institutionalism," said Ford O'Connell, a GOP strategist.

O'Connell said the two likely came together this week because remaining opposed could sink both of their futures as elected officials.

"They may be strange bedfellows, but their political livelihoods are basically intertwined," O'Connell said. "Their political livelihood rests with their ability to actually do things."

Read more from Sarah Westwood at the Washington Examiner

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