President Trump made headlines recently for his sudden willingness to work with congressional Democrats. First, he stunned Republican lawmakers when he decided to throw his support behind a plan, backed by Democrats. which would pass disaster relief funding while also raising the debt ceiling to fund the government through December.
Trump received a lot of backlash from his fellow Republicans for this decision. House Speaker Paul Ryan and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell were particularly “shell-shocked” when they learned of the deal.
The president hasn’t let his Republican colleagues’ displeasure stop him, though. Instead, he’s also started working with Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and top House Democrat Nancy Pelosi to protect DACA recipients from deportation. CNN revealed on Thursday that Trump is “moving closer” to making a deal with Schumer and Pelosi on this issue.
Trump himself spoke about the deal he hopes to make when he arrived in Florida to address victims of Hurricane Irma. He told those who gathered to hear him speak that he won’t agree to any kind of deal without first ensuring that his long-promised U.S.-Mexico border wall gets built.
‘We are not looking at citizenship. We are not looking at amnesty. We are looking at allowing people to stay here. We are working with everybody.
‘If we don’t have the wall, we are doing nothing.’
Clearly, Trump is not simply giving in on issues that he previously opposed. However, the fact that he’s working with Democrats at all is noteworthy, to say the least, and many people on both sides of the aisle have questioned where this sudden willingness comes from.
On Thursday morning, Robert Costa, a reporter for The Washington Post, told his followers on Twitter that he’d heard a possible explanation for Trump’s change of heart from anonymous “White House sources.”
‘WH sources tell me Hill GOP’s lack of fear is one reason Trump is engaging w/ Dems. They say he hated this story.’
Costa also included a link to a story he wrote in June about congressional Republicans not fearing Trump.
The article linked in Costa’s post details the difficulty the Trump administration faced when trying to repeal the Affordable Care Act. It also notes that Republicans on Capitol Hill have said Trump “is often not taken seriously.” Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) is quoted as laughing while saying that, “no,” he does not fear Trump. Meanwhile, another unnamed senior Republican reportedly called Trump and his political operation a “paper tiger” and said that many Republican lawmakers feel that, under him, they are free to “go their own way.”
If Costa’s sources are correct, then Trump’s recent deals with congressional Democrats have nothing to do with a desire for bipartisanship and everything to do with getting revenge on the Republicans who don’t fear him enough. A number of people have commented on Costa’s tweet and made it clear that they’re not surprised by this revelation.
Featured image via NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty Images.