Opinion: GOP should almost be grateful for Trump

(AP)

Congressional Republicans are pretending that the ongoing meltdown of the Trump White House is somebody else’s problem, and I can certainly see the attraction of that strategy.

“I’m going to leave it to the president to talk about and defend his tweets,” as House Speaker Paul Ryan puts it, adding that he’s going to focus instead on issues such as health care and tax reform.”Those are the things that I got elected to do,” says Ryan. “Those are the things that are within our purview in Congress. So I’m working on making sure that we make good on our promises and fix people’s problems. That’s what’s in my control, and that’s what I’m focused on.”

Unfortunately for Ryan, there’s a fundamental flaw in that strategy: The agenda that Ryan and his colleagues believe they were elected to enact is itself deeply unpopular, more unpopular in fact than the president whom they attempt to keep at arm’s length.

The most obvious example is the health-care plan that the House passed last month. Poll after poll show that the American public despises it. In the most recent Quinnipiac poll, for example, just 21 percent of voters said they support the GOP plan. When asked whether states should be given authority to raise insurance rates for Americans with pre-existing conditions — a key provision in the House bill — just 21 percent said yes.

Ryan and his colleagues are also pushing hard on tax reform plans that will lower corporate taxes and give huge tax breaks for the wealthy.  He believes that Congress will be able to pass such a plan by the end of the year, and that by doing so they will insulate themselves from any election-day blowback produced by the Trump administration.

That notion is totally divorced from reality.

Let’s grant, for argument’s sake, that Republicans can indeed agree upon and pass such a plan. I’ll be surprised if that’s true, but let’s pretend. The problem is that poll numbers consistently show overwhelming public opposition to such tax cuts, and when those raise the deficit, opposition soars even higher. In the Quinnipiac poll, just 18 percent of American voters say they support cutting taxes on the wealthy. Even among Republicans, just 34 percent back that approach.

(Gallup shows similar numbers, with 63 percent saying the rich pay too little in taxes, and 24 percent saying they pay too much.)

Overall, just 29 percent of voters in the Quinnipiac poll say the tax plan proposed by President Trump and Republicans will help the country, compared to 49 percent who say it will damage the country. And I won’t even go into the political impact of trying to privatize Medicare, a proposal that Ryan publicly embraced as recently as a week ago.

In a sense, then, congressional Republicans should almost be grateful for the spectacle that is the Trump White House, because for the moment at least it is distracting public attention from their own political craziness.

I say “almost grateful” because, well, there’s this:

Reader Comments 0

3908 comments
Dumporangebuffoon
Dumporangebuffoon

From Aol News:


""""In Israel on the second leg of his first overseas trip since entering office, Trump is to hold talks separately with Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in a stopover lasting barely 28 hours.

Speaking over the noise of the president's jet, Sara Netanyahu added: "I talk every place about how great you are," she said, and Netanyahu backed her up saying: "I can testify to that."

Netanyahu and his wife have a tense relationship with the Israeli media, which they have both described as biased against them. In January, Netanyahu described the media as "left-wing" and "Bolshevik" and said they were out to bring him down.

Testifying in a libel suit the Netanyahus filed against an Israeli journalist, Sara Netanyahu told the court: "Everything that is published about me, it's all lies, evil lies that bear no connection with who I really am ... The media uses me as a tool to try and topple the prime minister.""""

rimsky
rimsky

According to NPR trump is giving a free pass to the dictators, who are known for human rights abuse, a free pass.

I guess our foreign policy is been set back to 30-40 years ago.  

rimsky
rimsky

The fired US national security adviser will refuse to hand over documents to a Senate panel investigating alleged Russian meddling in the US election.

Michael Flynn reportedly plans to invoke his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination on Monday.

The Senate Intelligence Committee is probing possible links between the Trump campaign and Kremlin.

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-40004300

+++

Flynn knows what will happen to him if he turns over those document.  

Finger across the throat.

rimsky
rimsky

A diamond ring bought for £10 at a car-boot sale 30 years ago is expected to fetch £350,000 at auction.

The owner believed the "exceptionally sized" stone was a piece of costume jewellery when she bought it at West Middlesex Hospital in Isleworth, west London, in the 1980s.

+++

What a lucky find.

rimsky
rimsky

US President Donald Trump has begun a visit to Israel by warning of the threat posed by Iran if it acquires nuclear weapons.

"Iran must never be allowed to possess a nuclear weapon," he told reporters in Jerusalem, speaking beside Israeli President Reuven Rivlin.

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-39973197

+++

Well the idiot in chief is back to his campaign mode.  

Being in the middle did not last that long.

rimsky
rimsky

I just watched a video of his address the ME nations. He used both Islamist and Islamic.

++++

I would rather put up with fingernails across the chalk board.

ScubaSteve
ScubaSteve

I think you mean 'why did Obama and the leaders of China, Russia, the United Kingdom, France, and Germany green-light Iran nukes'

Paul42
Paul42

I'm quite surprised not one of our cons has attacked the President for the spineless, cowardly way in which he avoids saying "Radical Islamic Terrorism."

Just a few months ago he gave a speech in which he said 

"In the 20th Century, the United States defeated Fascism, Nazism, and Communism.

Now, a different threat challenges our world: Radical Islamic Terrorism."

and 

"We cannot let this evil continue.

Nor can we let the hateful ideology of Radical Islam – its oppression of women, gays, children, and nonbelievers – be allowed to reside or spread within our own countries.

We will defeat Radical Islamic Terrorism, just as we have defeated every threat we have faced in every age before.

But we will not defeat it with closed eyes, or silenced voices.

Anyone who cannot name our enemy, is not fit to lead this country. Anyone who cannot condemn the hatred, oppression and violence of Radical Islam lacks the moral clarity to serve as our President."

Donald talking to leaders of countries producing radicalization now sounds just like Presidents Bush and Obama, doesn't he, cons?    So why the silence on that this morning, hmmm?

http://thehill.com/blogs/pundits-blog/presidential-campaign/291498-full-transcript-donald-trump-addresses-radical

FIGMO2
FIGMO2

@Paul42

I just watched a video of his address the ME nations. He used both Islamist and Islamic.

Brosephus
Brosephus

@FIGMO2

He did not, however, use the phrase "radical Islamic terrorism".  That's the exact phrase he and many others claimed that Obama was weak for not using.

honested
honested

@Brosephus @FIGMO2 

Yes, I thought using the three magic words together was supposed to let some genie of American Exceptionalism out of a bottle and apply something similar to 'whoop rash' on our terrified enemies?

honested
honested

@TBS 

I'm sure FauxNewz went out of their way to find the cohort designed to show pleasure at chump's speeches, and keep away from anyone who disagreed.

Philo_Farnsworth
Philo_Farnsworth

Yeppers, Iran didn't like the speech.

Yawn.

They weren't supposed to.

Kamchak
Kamchak

Gone fishin' SHEETZ!

Philo_Farnsworth
Philo_Farnsworth

Yesterday Trump badmouthed Obama's BFF Iran bigley.

Well received by all.

Why did Obama green-light Iran nukes? Just another chunk added to Obama's ME cluster pile.

Philo_Farnsworth
Philo_Farnsworth

$1.5 billion in unmarked bills to Iran was a nice touch as well.

Paul42
Paul42

mea culpa.

I've noted a couple times that if Trump goes, Pence might get caught up in the same circumstances, which would result in Senate president pro tempore Sen Orrin Hatch assuming office.

That is incorrect.  My mind must've recoiled and blocked out any possibility that next in order of succession is actually Speaker of the House Rep Paul Ryan.

The nightmare's not going to end.  

Or, given the poll numbers Jay just published and the possibility of actually getting bills through the House, it just might be a good thing for Democratic prospects.

ByteMe
ByteMe

@StraightNoChaser He'd say that "the facts changed", although it would be unclear which facts actually changed his mind for him.

Brosephus
Brosephus

@StraightNoChaser

Ryan is trying to save his own rear.  Rumors of a RICO investigation into the campaign financing has a way of triggering fight or flight.

Paul42
Paul42

Visual Cortex

Let me know if you see this when you begin perusing.  Looks like one Democratic candidate has finally figured out what messaging is.

http://tinyurl.com/kmwx7gu

JeffreyEav
JeffreyEav

Trump's prayer at the Western Wall was about harm coming to Mueller.

ByteMe
ByteMe

@JeffreyEav "Dear god or Moohammed or Wajah or whatever you call yourself, thank you for doing my bidding, thank you for helping me win the election -- did you see the map of the counties I won?  Impressive, amiright? -- thank you for ... oh, wait, is that woman over there a hottie or what?"

honested
honested

@ByteMe @JeffreyEav 

Once again, if there is an antrhopomorphic overlord, right there is where he'd get to smitin'.

TetoLeo
TetoLeo

Honested,

If there is a supreme being our a "God" do you really think it's level of understanding and thought process would mimic our even make sense to a mortal mind such as yourself? Especially who or why there might be "smitin"

Or have you not thought that deeply about it and are just using it as an opportunity to poke at those with religious beliefs?

Kamchak
Kamchak

@TetoLeo

When people show their disbelief, do you automatically doubt they have "thought that deeply about it"?

Paul42
Paul42

@TetoLeo

I took honested's post not at all as a poke at those with religious beliefs.

It was a poke at Donald.

TetoLeo
TetoLeo

Paul42,

This particular comment was not the only one this morning claiming if there was a God it would kill or smitin' this or that.

TetoLeo
TetoLeo

Kamchak,

No, only when they attempt to rationalize through action or non-action by the god/gods as proof of existence or nonexistence.

Did you ever get a quote of Schiff claiming what you claimed he confirmed?

You wouldn't just make sh it up would you?

Paul42
Paul42

@TetoLeo

I've always taken Kamchak's posts along those lines as riffing off how several of our cons display their belief in a Supreme Being.

It's all vengeance, anger, etc. in their world.  

honested
honested

@TetoLeo 

I think I am attempting to point out how ridiculous it is to force modern society to hew to the notions established by illiterate goat herders 4,000 years ago before they invented 'god' and put into place a set of (mostly) ridiculous behaviors designed to 'please' this invention.

TetoLeo
TetoLeo

Paul,

It wasn't Kamchak who made the comments about God(s) smithing people or killing them. And rationalizing that if the people or person were not killed it was proof of the nonexistence of God or gods.

TetoLeo
TetoLeo

Honested,

Who is being forced?

You are aware the belief in god or gods far exceed the 4000 year timetable you are using. Nearly all peoples since we came out the trees have had a belief in something greater than themselves.

Paul42
Paul42

@TetoLeo Okay, sorry for the misattribution.

But an essential aspect of religious liberty is to just leave other people alone with whatever belief system they have.

So long as they don't try to impose their beliefs on others, especially through legislation.

TetoLeo
TetoLeo

Paul42,

Not for imposing religious views.

Just think it's silly to use as an example that no God exist because God didn't kill people whom any of us mortals think are bad or even evil.

Paul42
Paul42

He never fails to make people think "this guy is president of the US?!!?"

"N.Y. Times Quote of the Day ... "Love your shoes. Boy, those shoes. Man!" — President Trump, returning a compliment given by President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi of Egypt, who had told Mr. Trump, "You are a unique personality that is capable of doing the impossible."

Philo_Farnsworth
Philo_Farnsworth

Must be very little to hammer Trump for today if that's the best ya got.

Lol

Paul42
Paul42

@Philo_Farnsworth There's plenty.  That was simply opening levity.

Was waiting to see if any of the cons brought up weightier matters, such as Sarah's Friday admission echoing Trump's, that yes, they did in fact fire Comey to stop the Russia investigation.

But if it's not on Fox, you don't know about it, or believe it.