Senate Minority Leader Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) says the Democrats’ caucus in the Senate is unwilling to work with President Donald Trump.
“Trump, instead of doing where his campaign was, which was against both establishments, Democratic and Republican, so there might be some areas of common ground, has moved so far to the right that I don’t see any place we can work with him,” Schumer told The Huffington Post. “He’s not even talking about infrastructure. He’s not talking about trade.”
Schumer told The Huffington Post that he thinks Trump’s rhetoric will help the Democratic Party in the 2018 elections. He claimed, “This bodes very well for 2018. If Trump continues to govern from the hard right, and be the same kind of person who doesn’t tell the truth, who makes it up as he goes along, and we stay united and strong, we could actually take back the Senate.”
The Democrats have to defend 25 Senate seats in 2018, including ten seats in states won by Trump. Democrats need to gain three seats to have a one-seat majority, which they lost in 2014 when voters flipped nine seats from Democratic to Republican.
Schumer also expressed he was unfazed by Trump’s praise for him:
He thought by saying a few flattering things, he’s going to make me give up my values, and go work with him? We’ll go by our values, and his values are so far away from ours that there’s not much ground for compromise. I’ve told him, all the flattery, all the name-calling, isn’t going to make a darn bit of difference. You’ve got to do the right thing. So far, he has not.
Trump’s first joint address to Congress on Tuesday night broke from traditional themes offered by prior Republican presidents. His message was more populist, saying:
My administration wants to work with members in both parties to make child care accessible and affordable, to help ensure new parents have paid family leave, to invest in women’s health, and to promote clean air and clear water, and to rebuild our military and our infrastructure. … To launch our national rebuilding, I will be asking the Congress to approve legislation that produces a $1 trillion investment in the infrastructure of the United States — financed through both public and private capital– creating millions of new jobs.
Trump also addressed trade: “I believe strongly in free trade, but it also has to be fair trade. The first Republican president, Abraham Lincoln, warned that the ‘abandonment of the protective policy by the American government [will] produce want and ruin among our people.'”
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