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Outsiders vs. Insiders: Will Trump win his own ‘Battle of the Alamo’ even if no one survives?

The Alamo










No one ever said it would be easy.

During the 2016 presidential campaign Donald Trump was repeatedly asked what he would do if (and to the media, when) he lost the election. In typical Trumpian style the now-president would answer something to the effect of, “I have a great life, I don’t need to do this.”

Well, Trump didn’t/doesn’t (need to do it). And now that he’s completed the campaign, defeated Hillary Clinton handily in the Electoral College and served nearly two full years as president, it isn’t getting any easier for him. No one (except for maybe first lady Melania) can say for sure but there must be many moments when Trump thinks ‘What am I doing this for?’ ‘Is it really worth getting up every day and enduring a hailstorm of fake news garbage from people who aren’t fit (from an ethical standpoint) to shine my shoes?’

One glaring case in point is outgoing Tennessee Republican Sen. Bob Corker. Instead of running for reelection and overcoming a primary challenge Corker most certainly would’ve lost (because his own constituents can’t stand him), he “retired”. Mercifully for conservatives everywhere, the weasel establishmentarian’s official days in Washington are now numbered -- but that’s not preventing him from reminding people why they would’ve rejected him in the first place.

Allison Elyse Gualtieri reported at The Washington Examiner, “Outgoing Sen. Bob Corker took a swipe Sunday at President Trump's insistence on funding for a border wall that led to a partial government shutdown starting Saturday. ‘This is a made-up fight so that the president can look like he's fighting. Even if he wins, our borders are going to be insecure,’ the Tennessee Republican said on CNN's ‘State of the Union.’

“The president has stalled a spending bill that would continue to fund the government over the border wall funding issue. The House passed a version of the bill last week that included more than $5 billion for a border wall, but does not have enough support in the Senate, leading to the shutdown.

“’Just a few months ago, the president could have received $25 billion in border security just by dealing with the Dreamers which, by the way, most Republicans want to deal with the Dreamers issue,’ Corker said, referring to the status of undocumented immigrants who arrived in the United States illegally as children.”

This is a perfect example of why Republicans are one, constantly blamed for government work stoppages (the current one only impacts 25 percent of the workforce) and they fail, time after time, to make headway in reducing the size of government -- or accomplishing anything other than bloating the military budget and making each other appear hamstrung in the face of a united Democrat party; and two, they’ve solidified (again) their well-earned reputation as the “stupid party.”

Think of the Republican Party as a business operation. If you have a product -- in this case, government policies -- and your sales staff is out blubbering to the public about how awful it is, would anyone rush to purchase it? Democrats and the media always make hay on President Trump’s personal bugaboos, and thanks to traitorous dolts like Bob Corker, the GOP’s opposition doesn’t even need to work hard to compete on the public opinion battlefield.

While it’s true Trump did take “credit” for the shutdown (over a week before it started), in reality all of this is because of the senate filibuster rule. Democrats won’t even vote to end debate on the passed House bill knowing full well it would have an excellent chance of getting the 50 votes (plus Vice President Pence’s vote) to pass. Trump would have his wall funding, he’d sign the Homeland Security appropriations bill and those affected federal offices would turn the lights back on and get back to work doing whatever it is they do when they’re not at home sipping eggnog and toasting another paid day off.

Rather than get behind the president’s firm stand on the wall Corker grandstands and spreads half-truths and lies about what’s actually occurring in Congress. Why? Because he gets away with it. He’s a lame duck senator with practical veto power over the entire Republican Party. Corker’s fellow useless lame duck colleague, Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake, did the same thing with judges earlier this month.

To what end? To cement a personal vendetta against Trump? What good is this doing the country? How “unnecessary” is a government shutdown on principle? Don’t we need the border wall, Bob?

Again, if the GOP is “selling” the idea that illegal immigration is harmful -- which almost all Republicans agree is true -- then what good does it do not to have a wall? Even if you’re in favor of expanding legal immigration (a discussion for another time), wouldn’t it make sense to first ensure the border situation is dealt with? There’s no way there’ll be increased popular support for boosting immigration numbers when there are likely tens of millions of human beings here already without permission.

Corker implies a wall won’t solve the issue -- and it won’t on its own -- but wouldn’t it be best to add the wall as a part of an overall program to combat a nagging dilemma? Once a wall is in place it instantly becomes more productive to talk about the other things -- ending chain migration, revoking birthright citizenship, instituting a nationwide E-verify system and hiking the quantity of visas for skilled would-be immigrants who speak English and would actually contribute to this nation’s fortunes on day one.

There’s no getting around it -- illegal immigration is expensive. The unskilled and uneducated migrants consume public services at much higher rates than the native-born population. There’s no way it’s balanced out through the benefits derived from cheap labor, either. We ALL pay in one form or another. And where the wall’s concerned there are the enormous social costs involved too -- drugs flowing into the United States, increased crime (and prisons full of illegal alien gang members) and deflated wages for American workers.

What good is Corker accomplishing by going on national TV and badmouthing Trump while saying the shutdown is so “unnecessary” -- which plays right into the Democrats’ and media’s narrative? If anything, Corker is guaranteeing the dispute will last longer because his whining forced Trump to reply -- as he always does -- and stiffens Trump’s resolve to holdout for his side of the bargain. Is that what Corker wants?

In his reply tweet Trump suggested Corker is bitter due to the president’s cancelling of the notorious Corker/Obama/Kerry Iran deal the Tennessee senator worked so diligently to put together -- and because he withheld his endorsement from Corker’s potential reelection bid. This may or may not be true -- but how does it have any connection to the wall issue?

Trump doesn’t help himself by engaging in such petty back-and-forths with fools like Corker. Perhaps we should just be thankful Bob is almost gone and with him leaves his negative aura. The Republican Party -- and the country -- will be much better off without his self-serving input. Liberal Sunday morning cable news shows will need to look elsewhere for GOP Trump critics. Unfortunately, there are still plenty left to choose from.

According to one news report Trump has “shaken” the GOP. Jordain Carney reported at The Hill, “Senate Republicans saw the president effectively force a shutdown of parts of the government over his demands for $5 billion in funding for his wall on the Mexican border, after the Senate has passed a bill without extra border funding by voice vote to keep it open.

“And all of this took place as the stock market crumbled, falling in part on worries about Trump’s trade policies. Reports circulated over the weekend that the president was mulling the firing of Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell, who he has blamed for interest rate hikes.

“GOP lawmakers, just more than a month after a midterm election that saw them lose the House majority, are sending public warning signs that they think the administration is headed in the wrong direction.”

Carney additionally reported Republicans are worrying over Defense Secretary Mattis’s resignation as well as the recently announced administration decision to withdraw American troops from Syria (and a drawdown of U.S. forces in Afghanistan). Again, no one ever said being president would be easy but few probably forecasted much of the trouble and gnashing of teeth over Trump’s leadership would originate from within the GOP congressional caucus.

Listen close enough and it all sounds like the establishment throwing a collective hissy fit over the relatively new administration’s quick decision-making and lack of deference to the ruling class brains who’re used to being consulted and pandered to concerning every little bit of policymaking and execution. Well, Trump didn’t come to Washington to make friends -- he came to Make America Great Again.

Trump can rightly be criticized for the way he’s handled personnel shakeups and announcements of new policy directions, but none of this is particularly surprising given Trump’s lifelong top-down leadership orientation and his stubborn insistence on keeping his campaign promises. Yes, he’s gotten the beltway barons upset that their comfy chicken coop’s been invaded by the outsider wolf, but the grassroots isn’t nearly as bothered by Trump as are the elites.

Trump hasn’t exactly admitted it but his attitude can be summed up thusly: “I don’t work for them, I work for the American people.” All throughout his campaign Trump promised there would be real change in Washington if he were elected -- and that’s precisely what he’s delivered. These days news travels at the speed of light and immediate reactions to administration personnel or policy switches often takes people by surprise. But what if Trump waited to do everything until after every Republican senator was individually consulted and tallied for his opinion on a proposal?

Answer: nothing would get done. No one would be satisfied and we’d just be back to Obama’s second term where the economic pace of improvement slowed to a crawl (or was reversed) and citizens would complain, again, about how out of touch their representatives and senators are and gripe about needing “change”.

News flash: with a Republican president half the country always demands change. It’s not Trump they hate as much as what he represents… his policies.

It’s fair for folks to criticize the way Trump conducts himself and his administration but it’s not warranted in the overall scheme of things. The man is just doing what he said he’d do; Trump just has an uncanny way of stepping on heads while he’s doing it. After a lifetime of getting whatever he asked for through sheer force of personality and willpower it’s not likely to change, either.

The status quo is going down -- be glad for it.

Besides, Trump isn’t completely without defenders. Al Weaver reported at The Washington Examiner, “President Trump on Thursday showed his voters he's willing to fight for them by insisting that Congress approve border wall funding, a move that could pay off during his re-election campaign in 2020.

“’The fact that he's fighting here today is huge,’ said Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., on the same day Trump forced the House to approve a bill funding his border wall. ‘You can remember the Alamo in San Antonio. It's not because they won there, it's because they fought there. And if we're willing to fight, a lot of people support the president and his willingness to fight.’ ...

“Republicans think the president's supporters will not abandon him as long as he fights hard, even if he fails to win wall funding in this round. While Democrats are blaming Trump … Republicans are pointing to Democrats who refuse to negotiate on the wall.”

Meadows’ Battle of the Alamo analogy works well here. The only problem is every single Texan died at the old Spanish mission at the hands of the vastly numerically superior Mexican invading force -- and Trump’s been fighting a lot of last-ditch Alamo-type skirmishes since he entered politics. At some point the wounds and scars might catch up with him.

It's doubtful Democrats’ and the media’s relentless continued attacks will do much to dent Trump’s resolve, but if enough Republican senators and House members surrender without a fight it might foster a hopeless feeling with the president.

Even the bravest soldier can’t defeat an army of enemies on his own. One-man teams don’t thrive in politics.

Here’s thinking Trump will benefit from his fighting spirit in the 2020 election. He can afford to lose a few battles and still win the war if he prevails on certain issues. GOP congressman and senators would be wise to back his policies and stop joining with the haters to attack him personally.

By now President Trump realizes it’s not fun being in the White House, but nobody ever claimed it'd be easy (except for maybe him). It took decades for the Washington establishment to control government and they won’t be vanquished without a long battle. Trump is up to the job.

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So far President Donald Trump

So far President Donald Trump has exceeded expectations. Keep up the good work, sir!!