MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough says Republican leadership has lost control of their congressional majority, which will encourage President Donald Trump to cut more deals with Democratic lawmakers.
The “Morning Joe” host said the failure of leadership by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) had fractured the GOP majority, which put every lawmaker in play if the president wanted to pursue his own agenda.
“You now have 535 independent actors,” Scarborough said. “So Donald Trump is much, much more likely to be able to go à la carte — tell you what, I want the Republicans on these spending cuts, and I can get 218 in the House and 50 in the Senate on that, but on tax increases maybe I’ll go a little more (Steve) Bannon’s way, maybe I won’t just give tax cuts to the richest of the rich.”
The president has finally enjoyed some positive media coverage after accepting a budget deal offered by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), and co-host Mika Brzezinski said GOP leadership had embarrassed themselves by tying themselves to Trump.
“The loyalty oath, I think you can tell who’s taken it, and you end up looking weak and pathetic, actually,” she said.
Scarborough slapped down her suggestion, arguing the calculation was about votes, not loyalty — but Brzezinski shot back.
“Chuck and Nancy never took a loyalty oath and they’re doing just fine today,” Brzezinski said. “Gary Cohn, you might want to, like, give it up.”
Scarborough said the president’s base won’t abandon him for working with Democrats, which further encouraged Trump to sideline McConnell and Ryan — whom the former GOP lawmaker blamed for the failure to repeal the Affordable Care Act.
“Most Republicans are going to stay with Donald Trump because, as we have seen, most of his base stays with Donald Trump when he makes deals,” Scarborough said. “That allows his base to go on Twitter and say, ‘See, we told you he was a dealmaker.'”