As the Republican Party tries desperately to retain its grip on the Senate, Donald Trump is biting its fingers like Sonny Corleone when he's beating up his brother-in-law in The Godfather.
At a town hall in New Hampshire on Thursday, Trump said that one reason Sen. Mark Kirk of Illinois is losing his re-election race is that he has disavowed the GOP presidential nominee. "He's not doing well, but, hey, that's his problem. He wasn't for me…," Trump said.
Kirk has called Trump unfit to be commander in chief in the past. But he holds one of the most vulnerable Republican seats in the Senate. Kirk is a moderate who served five terms in the House, but he is up against a potent rival: Democratic Rep. Tammy Duckworth has opened up a seven-point lead against him, according to Real Clear Politics. Duckworth lost most of two legs when the helicopter she was piloting was hit by enemy fire in the Iraq War, but she went on to become the first Asian-American woman from Illinois elected to Congress.
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On Friday, Kirk's campaign manager slammed Trump, telling Business Insider that the Kirk is outperforming him in Illinois by 13 points.
This kind of public scrap between Trump and Republican senators struggling to hang on to their jobs is exactly what the GOP doesn't need right now. Last summer, the man at the top of the ticket withheld endorsements of Sen. John McCain of Arizona, whom he once said wasn't a war hero despite five years in captivity in North Vietnam, and Sen. Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire because they had been slow to support him.