Last week, recalcitrant conservatives in the House Freedom Caucus refused to support President Trump’s health-care bill, because it didn’t throw enough poor people off Medicaid. This helped kill the first major legislation of Trump’s presidency before it even reached the House floor — leaving the president to weather a weekend of headlines denigrating his deal-making skills.
On Thursday, Trump declared war on the House’s tea party hardliners.
At first blush, it’s hard to blame Trump for such frustrations. The president bears responsibility for much of the dysfunction that has defined his first two months in office. But the fact that the congressional GOP is beholden to a bunch of intransigent ideologues is a problem for which Trump can’t be blamed.
Or maybe he can: After all, he did spend thousands of dollars trying to get them elected. Among the mogul’s broad portfolio of political investments, were the following gifts to House Freedom Caucus members:
1) TRUMP, DONALD J MR. NEW YORK NY 10022 SELF ENTREPRENEUR BRAT, DAVID ALAN MR. VIA FRIENDS OF DAVE BRAT INC. 04/15/2015 2600.00 201507159000134795
2) TRUMP, DONALD NEW YORK NY 10022 SELF EMPLOYED SELF EMPLOYED LABRADOR, RAUL R. HON. VIA RAUL LABRADOR FOR IDAHO 03/31/2014 1000.00 14960742937
3) TRUMP, DONALD NEW YORK NY 10022 THE TRUMP ORGANIZATION CHAIRMAN HARRIS, ANDREW P VIA ANDY HARRIS FOR CONGRESS 03/31/2014 1000.00 14960745540
4) TRUMP, DONALD J NEW YORK NY 10022 SELF REAL ESTATE GOHMERT, LOUIS B. MR. JR. VIA LOUIE GOHMERT FOR CONGRESS COMMITTEE 03/28/2014 1000.00 14960886197
5) TRUMP, DONALD J NEW YORK NY 10022 SELF EMPLOYED REAL ESTATE INVESTOR DESANTIS, RONALD D. VIA RON DESANTIS FOR FLORIDA 03/31/2014 1000.00 14960689694
6) TRUMP, DONALD J. NEW YORK NY 10022 THE TRUMP ORGANIZATION CHAIRMAN JORDAN, JAMES D. VIA JIM JORDAN FOR CONGRESS 03/31/2014 1000.00 14941289760
7) TRUMP, DONALD J. NEW YORK NY 10022 SELF DEVELOPMENT MOONEY, ALEXANDER XAVIER VIA MOONEY FOR CONGRESS 2016 04/09/2014 1000.00 14961235061
“I was a businessman. I give to everybody. When they call, I give,” Trump said of his political donations at a Republican primary debate. “And you know what? When I need something from them, two years later, three years later, I call them, and they are there for me … And that’s a broken system.”
Apparently, the system has been fixed.