A week ago, Trump told Senate Republicans that they should get the annual spending bills passed before the August recess. That was optimistic, perhaps bordering on magical thinking. After all, they didn’t even pass any regular appropriations bills in 2017.
For lawmakers, this is a different issue. Trump loves to singularly tout results — though they are few and far between — but has never hesitated to bash lawmakers whenever he thinks they’re not moving fast enough on what he considers to be legislative priorities.
So many Congressional Republicans have found themselves personally on the ouch end of Trump’s twitter tirades since he took office just a year and a half ago that it seems almost normalized.
Earlier this month, Trump telegraphed what has since become increasing pressure to have his agenda pushed through.
We are going to demand Congress secure the border in the upcoming CR. Illegal immigration must end!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 4, 2018
This constant criticism has Republicans worried that Trump could dampen enthusiasm and turnout among the GOP base, ahead of the midterm elections.
Senator Mike Rounds (R-SD) said: “It would be very helpful with our base if rather than suggesting we weren’t doing anything, that he acknowledged what we are getting done.” Rounds also said that Trump was told as much last week at a meeting on Capitol Hill.
Senator Lamar Alexander echoed Rounds’s concerns, “When I sit down with a small group of Republicans in Tennessee, they say, ‘Why don’t you guys do anything?’” He said he has received so many questions and complaints about the “ObamaCare” failure he was compelled to go ahead and print out cards that he hands to constituents that list all the accomplishments of the 115th Congress.
The primary problem seems to be that Congressional Republicans made the mistake of believing that Donald Trump is a Republican… when he’s demonstrably a Trumpublican.