For those of us who have long maintained that Donald Trump was the ultimate Clinton Crime family plant, he keeps giving us ammunition.
Many of us have pretty much given up on the top of the GOP ticket, which makes the races down ballot, holding the House and Senate and gubernatorial races all the more important. When asked about the importance of holding the Senate, Trump’s response was telling:
“Well, I’d like them to do that. But I don’t mind being a free agent, either,” Trump replied when that question was posed to him.
This lack of concern about the confines of the job from Trump, who very likely has less than zero understanding of the “separate but equal” branches of government is almost certainly due to his belief that as president, he would wield unchecked power over the offices beneath the presidency.
In other words, no matter how many seats Republicans lose in the bloodbath that’s looming, he’ll be the boss and they’ll all be forced to do as he says.
No problem, right?
For those who are struggling to hold their seats, however, it’s a problem. Trump entered an agreement with the RNC to fundraise for the party, as a whole, but with his own campaign structure in shambles, he is leaning on them to do all the work and keep his horrendous candidacy afloat.
There are currently six Republican incumbents running for re-election in states Barack Obama won in 2012: Sen. Mark Kirk of Illinois, Sen. Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire, Sen. Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, Sen. Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania and Sen. Rob Portman of Ohio. Some of these candidates’ fortunes depend in part on how well Trump does in their states in November.
Both Ayotte and Johnson have offered tepid support of the nominee whereas both Kirk and Rubio are clearly at odds with Trump. Last Thursday Senate Republicans had a tense meeting with Trump, where he told them if they didn’t support him they’d be “supporting Hillary.”
Trump wants to be the “face” of the party, but he has no desire to put in the hard work, and if his lack of action or willingness to be a team player and think beyond his own campaign results in a Democrat sweep down ballot, he doesn’t care.