Susan Wright in RedState:

“He took their debt ceiling deal without even attempting to work out a better term. So much for his fabled ‘deal making’ skills.”

On Thursday morning, at the behest of Representative Nancy Pelosi of California, Mr. Trump tweeted that those enrolled in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program wouldn’t need to worry about deportation during the six-month period he gave Congress to legislate a solution. For Ms. Wright, this one message on Twitter affirmed what she and other conservatives skeptical about Mr. Trump suspected all along, that he “was a Republican of convenience, and that he would betray his base, his party, and the country.” Read more »


From the Left


The meeting ended with a surprise deal on hurricane aid and the debt ceiling between Mr. Trump and Democratic leaders, including Senator Chuck Schumer of New York.

Al Drago for The New York Times

Jeet Heer in The New Republic:

“Rather than triumphing with a successful Clinton-esque triangulation, Trump might be facing not one but two hostile parties, thereby accelerating the breakdown of government.”

Mr. Heer recalls how, during the 2016 election, Senator Ted Cruz of Texas predicted that as president, Mr. Trump would be a flexible, pragmatic dealmaker, willing to work with Democrats like Ms. Pelosi and Mr. Schumer. However, Mr. Heer writes, the president’s recent triangulations might be “more motivated by spite than strategy.” Read more »


Josh Marshall in Talking Points Memo:

“Clearly Trump felt that McConnell and Ryan are not serving him well enough or loyally enough or both. So he lashed out or tried to damage them. Schumer and Pelosi were simply the most convenient cudgels available.”

It is possible that the president has pivoted. More likely, according to Mr. Marshall, is that Mr. Trump is operating under his “core drive,” which is “dominance.” For this president, political or ideological goals are subordinate to personal ones. Mr. Trump’s politics are driven by a “zero sum vision of human and economic relations,” a need to dominate that can, like in this instance, turn “self-destructive.” Read more »


David Nir in Daily Kos:

“Given Trump’s volatility and his fealty to his white ethno-nationalist base, it can’t be overstated how difficult it will be to ensure a positive outcome for Dreamers. But Democrats have done everything in their power to maximize their position ahead of this battle, and remarkably, it’s one they might yet win.”

Mr. Nir’s assessment of the Democrats’ three-month budget deal with the president? It’s a “huge win.” It all comes down to the Democrats “maintaining leverage” with the president. Read more »


And Finally, From the Center:

Conor Friedersdorf in The Atlantic:

“A person inclined to the term’s original sense could say that Trump just acted like a RINO, given that he literally sided with liberal Democrats over conservative Republicans.”

Mr. Friedersdorf charts how political allegiances and identifications have shifted under Mr. Trump’s presidency. A “Republican in name only,” or RINO, as Mr. Friedersdorf explains, began as a Republican who was “insufficiently conservative”; became a Republican who was “insufficiently strident or bombastic or extremist”; and now is merely anyone who disagrees with President Trump. These rifts can be attributed to the “schizophrenia of a political party that elevated the Tea Party, the Freedom Caucus, and Donald Trump in quick succession.” Read more »


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