Trump and McConnell reach a cease fire

  • 16 October 2017
  • NormanL
Trump and McConnell reach a cease fire

The public acrimony between President Trump and Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell may not be all it seems. Away from the cameras, and Twitter, there appears to be a growing cooperation between the two men as each realizes they need the other to enact the President's agenda. From Axios, we get this:

Well-wired Republicans privately think chances for tax cuts are still pretty bleak. If Trump and McConnell are able to patch things up even temporarily, Republicans have a better chance at avoiding an embarrassing legislative shutout that could imperil their majorities.

The stakes: They need to get a budget done in the Senate this week. No budget, no tax reform. It's that simple.

Jonathan Swan hears that the two had a productive conversation on the agenda, and bonded over their joint effort to nominate and confirm conservative judges across the country.

Trump was upbeat and brought up a Kim Strassell column in The Wall Street Journal, "Scalias all the way down," giving the president credit for "remaking the federal judiciary."

I'm told the two speak behind the scenes more frequently than is leaked, with judges and tax reform as regular topics:

They also are said to trade intel such as whip counts.

That makes Trump's public and private slaps at McConnell seem even more bizarre, although it fits with the reality that much of what this president says is for show.

The two will have lunch at the White House tomorrow.

They don't have to like each other to get things done. With the clock ticking, and the powerful incentives for each to show progress -- and success -- in advance of the 2018 elections, it's not much of a surprise to see this.

The President is very good at working behind the scenes with people. Mitch McConnell is, too. All sniping aside, if the two can make progress, then the country will be better off for it.