It was inevitable that as Donald Trump continued to collapse in popularity and ran out of adversaries on the other side of the aisle to blame, he would end up trying to scapegoat his own Republican Party, prompting the party to begin taking a torch to him in retaliation. What may come as a surprise is that the inevitable civil war between Trump and the GOP has broken out on this scale this quickly.
Trump has become so (correctly) fearful of being taken down by the Russia investigation that he’s (incorrectly) concluded his only way out of the mess is to get rid of Attorney General Jeff Sessions so he can then get rid of Special Counsel Robert Mueller. But Sessions’ old pals in the Republican Senate are taking more than a little offense to this, and they’re making clear that they’re more loyal to Sessions than they are to Trump. And as Trump begins attacking Republican Senators for not supporting his health care disaster, they’re not hesitating to retaliate either – and this has become more than just a war of words.
Republican Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley announced this week that he won’t allow any Trump nominee for Attorney General to make it out of committee (link), which would fully sink Trump’s plan to get rid of Mueller. Republican Senator Orrin Hatch, who is as conservative as they come, took a stand against Trump’s transgender military ban in an apparent attempt at retaliation over the Sessions fiasco (link). Lindsey Graham is now vowing to pursue legislation that would prevent Trump from being able to fire Mueller one way or the other (link), in the hope of getting him to back of his plan to get rid of Sessions.
And now that Donald Trump is threatening to punish the state of Alaska because its Republican Senator Lisa Murkowski is refusing to support TrumpCare, she’s firing back by using her committee to freeze out his existing nominees (link). This has all taken place in the past few days, and is escalating and accelerating. As TrumpCare sinks further, and as Trump ramps up his attacks on Sessions, the civil war between Trump and the GOP will only become more destructive to both sides of it.
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Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report