▶ Watch Video: Marc Short on Trump’s post that McConnell has a “death wish”

Marc Short, a senior adviser to former Vice President Mike Pence and onetime director of legislative affairs under then-President Trump, said it was “obviously wrong” for the former president to use a “racial slur” against Elaine Chao, the wife of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and Trump’s former transportation secretary.

Short made the comments in an interview on CBS News’ “Red and Blue” Monday night, after Trump last week posted on his platform Truth Social that McConnell has a “DEATH WISH” for voting with Democrats to approve a stop-gap funding bill, and called Chao, “his China-loving wife, Coco Chow.” Short called the post “erroneous,” to say the last, highlighting how much Chao has done for the cause of freedom in China. 

“When I — when I saw those tweets at midnight, I sort of assumed the president had taken to drinking at that point,” Short joked. “I think that you know, it’s important to remember that Elaine Chao and her family have been strong crusaders against communist China their whole lives. She’s devoted herself to that. She’s spent time outside of government working at Heritage Foundation, fighting the cause for freedom. She, her family is actually from Taiwan. I think that that certainly was a misplaced and erroneous tweet, to say the least.”

Trump, who doesn’t drink, continues to criticize Republicans who don’t fully align with him on Truth Social. Although the former president is expected to announce a 2024 bid, exactly when he might do so isn’t yet clear. Pence has also hasn’t ruled out a presidential bid and has made multiple trips to Iowa since the 2020 election. 

CBS News correspondent Caitlin Huey-Burns pointed out that most Republicans have offered little in the way of rebuke for the former president’s “death wish” tweet. On CBS News “Face the Nation” Sunday, Sen. Rick Scott declined to criticize the former president’s comments. 

“Caitlin, I can’t speak for them,” Short said of other Republicans. “I think that Elaine Chao has been a strong crusader against communist China. I think the president’s factually wrong in his tweet, much less to the notion of him taking a racial slur like that I think was obviously wrong.” 

Short also suggested that “there’s a sense that there’s been such enormous bias against [Trump] in the mainstream media, that perhaps [Republicans] are overcompensating for that. But again,” he added, “I don’t think there’s any place for the tweet he sent out the other night, and I think it’s entirely wrong.”