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No. 3 Senate Republican John Barrasso vows to make Biden a 'one-half-term president'

The Wyoming lawmaker's remarks come after McConnell pledged to block the president's agenda and sharply criticized the administration's policies.
Image: Senator John Barrasso, R-Wy., talks to reporters following the Senate Republicans weekly policy lunch at the U.S. Capitol on June 15, 2021.
Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., talks to reporters after the Senate Republicans' weekly policy lunch at the U.S. Capitol on Tuesday.Evelyn Hockstein / Reuters

The No. 3 Senate Republican, John Barrasso of Wyoming, told a group of voters that he wants to make President Joe Biden a "one-half-term president."

"Mitch McConnell's come under a lot of criticism for saying, at one point, he wanted to make sure that Barack Obama was a one-term president," Barrasso said last Thursday at an event hosted by the Ripon Society, a centrist Republican think tank, which posted the remarks Tuesday.

"I want to make Joe Biden a one-half-term president. And I want to do that by making sure they no longer have House, Senate, White House," he said.

McConnell, R-Ky., the Senate minority leader, has vowed to block Biden's agenda and sharply criticized the administration's policies. McConnell said last month that he is "100 percent" focused on "stopping" Biden's administration.

"We're confronted with severe challenges from a new administration and a narrow majority of Democrats in the House and a 50-50 Senate to turn America into a socialist country, and that's 100 percent of my focus," he said.

Before the 2010 midterms, McConnell told the National Journal that "the single most important thing" Republicans wanted at the time was for Obama to be "a one-term president," adding, "I don't want the president to fail; I want him to change."

Obama was re-elected for a second term, but Republicans won control of the House after the 2010 midterms and gained the Senate for the final two years of Obama's presidency, which denied him confirmation of a Supreme Court nominee. Republicans lost control of the House during the Trump administration, and Democrats narrowly regained the Senate last year.

Barrasso said Democrats are the "party of socialism" in his remarks and excoriated the Democratic agenda as government welfare.

"I'm looking forward to a very successful 2022," he said. "Republicans want to continue to work on growing the economy, and the Democrats want to grow the government."

He said Biden is going "along for the ride" as the party veers left on policies regarding policing, jobs and climate change. Barrasso also suggested that Biden is a rubber stamp for the Senate majority leader and the House speaker.

"Joe Biden will never veto a bill," he said. "He will go down in history as a president who has never vetoed a bill, because he will sign whatever Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi put on his desk."