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Photo: Sarah Silbiger/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), a longtime advocate of democracy in Myanmar, told Politico Monday the Biden administration is "trying to do the right thing" in responding to the Myanmar military coup.

What he's saying: "On the domestic front, I have not yet witnessed something that I’ve been happy about," McConnell said. "But in this area, I think their instincts are good. I think they’re trying to do the right thing."

Between the lines: President Biden has consulted McConnell on the U.S.' response to the takeover in Myanmar, which has led police and military to kill over 700 people since February, Politico reports.

  • The Republican senator, an ally to Myanmar's democratically elected leader Aung San Suu Kyi, called on the Biden administration to address the coup at the United Nations Security Council to ensure international attention.
  • “Our ability to influence this from halfway around the world is limited,” he said. “But we do have tools.”
  • "The lion share of the burden is on the State Department and the administration," he added. "But in any way that congressional action needs to be a part of this: Count me in."

A former top State Department official who used to work with McConnell's staff told Politico McConnell has been "frustrated at times that, on both sides of the aisle, the White House and the State Department hasn't always come up with effective Burma policies."

The big picture: The Biden administration has meted out a number of sanctions on Myanmar military officials in response, suspending trade engagement and imposing export controls.

Go deeper: UN envoy says "a bloodbath is imminent" in Myanmar

Go deeper

Apr 10, 2021 - World

Myanmar security forces kill over 80 in single day, monitoring group says

People protest against the military coup in Yangon. Photo: Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Myanmar security forces killed at least 82 people during anti-coup protests in the town of Bago on Friday, according to the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners monitoring group.

What they're saying: "It is like genocide," Myanmar Now news outlet quoted protester organizer Ye Htut as saying, per Reuters. "They are shooting at every shadow."

Hutchinson says GOP should go "back to our principles" after reports of Trump tirade

Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson said Sunday that the GOP should get "back to our principles," following reports that Former President Trump bashed Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell as a “dumb son of a bitch” at a Republican National Committee retreat on Saturday.

Between the lines: Trump went after a slew of Republicans, including McConnell and his wife, former Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao, for not backing him during his impeachment trial in February, per Politico.

Exclusive: White House targets McConnell, McCarthy in infrastructure push

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

The White House is selling President Biden's $2.2 trillion infrastructure plan by projecting how much it will help each state — starting with Kentucky and California.

Why it matters: Tagging the homes of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) not only puts them on the defensive, but warns other Republicans they'll have to explain why this bridge or that highway isn't something they can approve.

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