This was the chyron that ran on Fox News, of all people, yesterday when reporting on remarks made by Donald Trump at a luncheon in the White House yesterday.
In the interests of fairness, a concept seriously lacking both in the White House and Fox News these days, Trump’s remarks were addressed to the healthcare legislation that went down in flames this week in the Senate. Although to many, except the true believers in Trumpism, it does appear to be an apt description of his entire administration thus far.
While Trump has made many claims about the achievements of his term as president thus far, most of them are bogus. He has NOT signed more bills than any other president thus far. He has signed a lot of executive orders, but perhaps it wouldn’t be so many if the federal judiciary didn’t keep placing injunctions on some of them.
Note the following comment by long-time political observer Bill Kristol yesterday:
Despite two major setbacks in the Senate, where Mitch McConnell could not scrape together 50 of his 52 seat majority to even get their highly unpopular healthcare bill to the floor of the Senate for consideration, Trump still seems to believe that it is still going to somehow happen. This morning he tweeted out:
Well, the Republicans never discuss how good their healthcare bill is because it is a terrible piece of legislation. There is nothing good to discuss about it. If they haven’t been able to get something better in the last seven years, it is not likely they are going to perform a miracle over lunch – even if it is lunch with Donald Trump. In fact, their last attempt was not even a healthcare bill at all, but an attempt for a full repeal of the Affordable Care Act with nothing to replace it.
Fortunately for all of us, three women Republican Senators – Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, and Susan Collins of Maine – shut down that potentially disastrous proposal. When the job needs to be done, count on the women to do it.
There has been talk that the GOP leadership in the House plans to take up tax reform legislation soon, now that healthcare reform is dead in the water. If Trump thought “healthcare is hard” he ain’t seen nothin’ yet.
So far the chances of the GOP, headed by Trump, passing any significant legislation this year looks bleak, despite their having majorities in the House, the Senate, and a Republican President in the White House. Despite attempts to blame this failure on obstruction by the Democrats, the numbers just don’t add up. The Democrats may be able to delay, for a little while, some initiatives, but they can’t outvote the Republicans in either House of Congress.
Trump has achieved one significant milestone that no president in the last 70 years has done. At six months into his presidency, with a 36% approval rating, he is the most unpopular president at this stage since political polling began.
It might begin to dawn on some of the more astute Republicans in Congress before the 2018 mid-terms that their chances of re-election might be better with a President Pence than a President Trump in the White House. But that might be too much to hope for.
In the meantime, eventually, they might get something done.