On Tuesday President Trump held a join press conference with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. Here are some highlights from it:
- Trump vowed to continue to fight for the repeal of Obamacare. His executive order last week was just the beginning. He also put Mitch McConnell on notice: “This man is going to get it done, and I think get it done long before anybody else, and I think it’s going to be a great healthcare.” Translation: Get. This. Done.
- Tax Cuts/Reform is the next major item on the agenda. It was interesting that Trump linked the need for tax cuts/reform to competition with other countries: “When China is at 15 percent, when I hear that Ireland is going to be reducing their cooperate rates down to 8 percent from 12. But you have other countries also reducing. We can’t be at 35 percent and think we’re going to remain competitive in terms of companies and in terms of jobs.”
- Trump says FEMA gave him an A+ on his handling of the hurricanes.
- A major economic development bill to come soon.
- A major announcement (probably next week) on the drug crisis and the opioid problem.
- Trump touted his judicial nominees including Neil Gorsuch on the Supreme Court. I believe that appointing judges who will interpret the constitution and not legislate from the bench will prove to be one of President Trump’s most lasting and important legacies.
- Trump disputed stories that he doesn’t have a good relationship with members of the House and Senate, calling it Fake News.
- On Democrats: “Just so you understand, the Republican Party is very, very unified. When we get things approved, we have to go through hell because we have no Democrat support, we have nobody. We don’t have a vote from the Democrats. As an example: massive tax cuts — we may not get any Democrat votes. Now, we also may get three of four, but we may get no — for massive tax cuts. We’re the highest-taxed country in the world, and yet we may get no Democrat support. And that’s because they’re obstructionists and they just basically want us to do badly, but that’s not going to happen.”
Mitch McConnell echoed the same priorities, especially on judges:
“The single-most significant thing this President has done to change America is the appointment of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court. But it’s not just the Supreme Court. There are a lot of vacancies at both the circuit court and district court level, as the President has indicated, of young, conservative — and when we say conservative about a judge, what we’re talking about here are, the kind of the people the President is appointing to the courts believe that the role of a judge is to try to rule based upon what the law says, not what they hoped the outcome would be.
Justice Scalia used to say, if the judge is not occasionally unhappy with the conclusion he reached, he’s not a very good judge. Or as Justice Gorsuch put it down in my state a couple of weeks ago, judges don’t wear red, they don’t wear blue — they wear black.
And those are the kind of people the President is sending up to the Senate to be confirmed. Many of them, as he pointed out, are younger and will be on the bench for a long time, and have a great deal to do with what kind of country we’re going to have far into the future.”
But one of the most incredible details of the joint press conference was that Mitch McConnell actually smiled! Amazing! Normally he looks like he’s taken a spoonful of vitameatavegamin.
Overall, Trump demonstrated once again his ability to stay on offense. He continues to confound the media and the Democrats by not shrinking and slithering away under their constant assault. Other Republicans should take notice and emulate it.