Forget Coattails: GOP Needs Trump’s Backbone in 2018

Amen to this — Republicans have long been defined for a lack of backbone. Here is Julie Kelly writing at American Greatness:

Senator Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) just got beaten by Jell-O.

After talks to reopen the government stalled on Saturday, the Senate Minority Leader said, “negotiating with this White House is like negotiating with Jell-O, it is next to impossible.” Schumer also warned, “there needs to be a big deal on a range of topics—including not just immigration, but also domestic spending levels—for the government to reopen.” Forty-eight hours later, citing Trump’s “refusal to compromise,” Schumer joined 31 Democratic senators to reopen the government.

Empty-handed. No deal.

If Trump is Jell-O, Schumer is pudding. And the Democrats’ prospects for winning the House and Senate this November could be toast.

For long-suffering Republican Party activists and observers like myself, this weekend felt different. We waited for the usual cave-in, the standard Republican capitulation, another retreat by the Stupid Party. When Trump announced he would meet with Schumer on Friday afternoon, that familiar sense of doom set in: Here we go, the Republicans are gonna take it on the chin just like we did for eight years with Obama.

. . .

Amazingly, Republicans stayed on message, pushing the president’s theme. House Speaker Paul Ryan called out Schumer and Senator Dick Durbin for acting in bad faith, using their own words against them from the 2013 government shutdown. An animated Ryan said on Face the Nation that the Senate Minority Leader needed to “end the politics of idiocy,” and the usually-diplomatic Speaker trolled Schumer all weekend with the hashtag #SchumerShutdown.

Even some of Ryan’s more right-leaning detractors in the House applauded his tough approach. Politico reported that “rank-and-file Republicans—including some of his fiercest critics on the right flank—are applauding Ryan’s unwavering position during the shutdown. His stance, in a nutshell: As long as the government’s closed, there will be no immigration negotiations.” Rep. Mark Walker (R-N.C.) told Politico that “Ryan’s leadership of the conference during the shutdown has “created unity” unlike he’s ever seen in the often-divisive GOP conference.”

Read more: American Greatness

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