POLITICS

Mike Pence Takes Shot At Mitch McConnell, Senate GOP

11/18/2010 12:37 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

In an interview with Fox News last night, popular GOP Rep. and potential 2012 presidential candidate Mike Pence (Ind.) delivered a surprising slight to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Republican leadership in the Senate.

Here's the transcript, from GOP 12:

BRET BAIER: Do you think Republican leadership gets it?

MIKE PENCE: I think House Republicans get it. House Republicans -- I believe -- in the last year and a half have returned to our roots.

BAIER: Are you distinguishing between Senate Republicans?

PENCE: I think House Republicans get it.

BAIER: Okay. [laughing]

PENCE: I think that the opportunity for Republicans in the House of Representatives to provide that check on the big government liberalism of this Administration is very real.

BAIER: And you'd say that to Mitch McConnell, as well?

PENCE: [smiling] I think House Republicans get it.

The level of disregard that Pence shows toward Mitch McConnell may be a sign that the Indiana congressman still has some lasting issues of trust when it comes to the Senate Minority Leader's recently redefined stance on earmarks. Pence, a longtime opponent of earmarking, was one of the first people to join Republican efforts to ban the practice. McConnell, an avid earmarker in the past, was reluctant to back the move and claimed that it wouldn't actually help close the deficit. He threw his support behind the measure only after getting pressure from his conservative colleagues and constituents.

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