Two US senators have been accidentally recorded accusing President Donald Trump of being “crazy” at the end of a Senate subcommittee hearing.
Republican Susan Collins and Democrat Jack Reed were caught on a live microphone on Tuesday local time, discussing the Trump administration’s “irresponsible” handling of the budget.
“I swear, [the Office of Management and Budget] just went through and whenever there was ‘grant,’ they just X it out,” Ms Collins said, according to the Washington Post.
“With no measurement, no thinking about it, no metrics, no nothing. It’s just incredibly irresponsible.”
“Yes,” Mr Reed replied. “I think – I think he’s crazy,” he said, referring to the President, according the Post. “I mean, I don’t say that lightly and as a kind of a goofy guy.”
“I’m worried,” Ms Collins added.
“Oof,” Mr Reed said. “You know, this thing – if we don’t get a budget deal, we’re going to be paralysed.”
“I know,” Ms Collins replies.
“[Department of Defence] is going to be paralysed, everybody is going to be paralysed,” Mr Reed said.
“I don’t think he knows there is a [Budget Control Act] or anything,” Collins says, referring to a 2011 law that defines the budget process.
“You’ve got [Budget Director Mick] Mulvaney saying we’re going to put in all sorts of stuff like a border wall. Then you’ve got [Treasury Secretary Steve] Mnuchin saying it’s got to be clean,” Mr Reed said.
“We’re going to be back in September, and, you know, you’re going to have crazy people in the House.”
The two then addressed a radio interview involving Republican representative Blake Farenthold, who suggested that if Ms Collins was male, he’d challenge her to a duel for opposing the Obamacare overhaul.
“Did you see the one who challenged me to a duel?” Ms Collins asked Mr Reed.
“I know,” he replied. “Trust me. Do you know why he challenged you to a duel? ‘Cause you could beat the **** out of him.”
“Well, he’s huge,” Ms Collins said. “And he – I don’t mean to be unkind, but he’s so unattractive it’s unbelievable.”
“Did you see the picture of him in his pyjamas next to this Playboy bunny?” she said, referring to a photo of Mr Farenthold before the microphone went dead.
This is the photo Sen. Susan Collins was referring to when she commented on Rep. Blake Farenthold wearing pajamas in 2010. pic.twitter.com/jZYCPC4FYW
— Beatrice-Elizabeth (@MissBeaE) July 25, 2017
Senator Collins, in her fourth term, is a moderate known for working with Democrats and announced last year she would not vote for Mr Trump as president.
She previously expressed concerns about deep Medicaid cuts in the Republican bill.
Mr Farenthold’s office declined to comment, but Senator Collins said she had received an apology from the congressman, and offered one in return.
“Neither weapons nor inappropriate words are the right way to resolve legislative disputes,” she said in a statement.
“I received a handwritten apology from Rep Farenthold late this morning. I accept his apology, and I offer him mine.”
Senator Reed’s office said he was just, “letting Senator Collins know he’s in her corner”.
– With agencies