It wasn’t uncommon for former president Barack Obama to get an earful of constructive criticism when he would make his annual trip to Capitol Hill to meet with Senate Democrats. A top aide to Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid said that they would routinely “confront” Obama in a forceful but respectful manner “with disagreements on many issues.”
President Trump went to Capitol Hill to meet with Senate Republicans on Tuesday, and there could have been some heavy criticism. The GOP leadership could have raise concerns about the White House’s criticisms of John McCain, Trump’s readiness to help China’s ZTE, the president’s trade tariffs, and a variety of ongoing Trump-related scandals.
Not One Confrontation of Party’s President
But there was not one confrontation of their party’s president. The Senate Republicans were basically silent on anything controversial. As NBC News reported: “The elephants in the room didn’t want to talk about the elephants in the room.”
The president shared his legislative accomplishments, his confidence that Republicans can win in the upcoming midterm elections and the foreign policy victories he expects in the near future. And then there were just two questions according to Sen. John Kennedy, R-La. They asked about immigration and about how well Republicans have done with power in Washington.
There were no questions on McCain, China, trade, and Trump’s scandals?
“Politico” reported that the senators may have had trouble getting any words into the conversation. Trump showed up and spoke for nearly an hour uninterrupted.mSen. Jeff Flake of Arizona said he wanted to bring up the White House aide’s disparaging comment about McCain but wasn’t given the opportunity.
“There was no time. There were two questions. He spoke for a long time. All of us had our hands up ready to ask questions but ran out of time,” Flake said.
When asked why didn’t the Republican senators use the opportunity to press Trump on areas of concern? “That’s not what we do in those meetings,” Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) said after the meeting.