Speaking with CNN hosts John Berman and Alisyn Camerota, former Clinton administration spokesperson Joe Lockhart said Donald Trump is in a very bad place now that he is facing an all-but-certain impeachment trial and needs the support of every Republican lawmaker he can round up.
Noting that the president dropped his plans to hold the G7 summit at one of his golf resorts, reportedly after being pressured by GOP lawmakers, Lockhart said Trump’s acquiescence — when normally he would have ignored their advice — demonstrates there is a new dynamic at play for the first time since Trump became president.
“It was striking yesterday that, in a functional White House you would have flooded the zone with people defending the chief of staff [Mick Mulvaney],” Lockhart began. “And at every talking point you come up with, they were left to [Secretary of State Mick] Pompeo who was there to do foreign policy who didn’t defend them and Mulvaney to defend himself.”
“I think the really interesting thing is the balance of power shifting in Washington,” he continued. “You have the Doral decision. You have Syria, the decision was somewhat of a climb-back now on redeploying troops. It’s because of impeachment and because Republicans of the Senate now have leverage on the president, because he now has to depend on those republicans to stay in office. So you’re finding — I think you’ll find a lot more senators publicly pushing back and getting more of what they want out of the White House.”
“I don’t think without the impeachment inquiry he would have climbed down on Doral,” he admitted. “I think he would have just rode it out and say this was a great thing and he would have sold it for a year — the dynamic has definitely changed.”