Taegan Goddard

Does Trump Consider a Government Shutdown a Win?

Stan Collender: “Unless the House Freedom Caucus decides to blow up the process, Congress is most likely to send Trump a funding bill for the rest of fiscal 2017 that doesn’t include any of the major policy changes he’s suggested: no money for the wall, no defunding of Planned Parenthood, no additional appropriations for the Pentagon, nothing on sanctuary cities, no enhanced border enforcement, continued funding for Affordable Care Act subsidies, etc. Congressional leaders are very likely to make promises about dealing with all those issues in the future — in a soon-to-come standalone supplemental appropriation for military spending, for example — but exclude them all from the 2017 funding bill.”

“The question is whether Trump will sign that bill and keep the government open, or veto it and shut Washington down?”

“Trump could decide that preventing the government from shutting its doors would be a win because it’s something several of his predecessors — including Obama — couldn’t do.”

A Hundred Days of Trump

David Remnick: “The hundred-day marker is never an entirely reliable indicator of a four-year term, but it’s worth remembering that Franklin Roosevelt and Barack Obama were among those who came to office at a moment of national crisis and had the discipline, the preparation, and the rigor to set an entirely new course. Impulsive, egocentric, and mendacious, Trump has, in the same span, set fire to the integrity of his office.”

How Trump Succeeds Without Actually Succeeding

Politico: “More than a belief in the power of positive thinking or the casual audacity of a tireless salesman, Trump has perfected a narrative style in which he doesn’t merely obscure reality—he tries to change it with pronouncements that act like blaring, garish roadside billboards. Unrelenting in telling his own story, he has defined himself as a success no matter what—by talking the loudest and the longest, and by insisting on having the first word and also the last. And it’s worked. Again and again, throughout his adult life, Trump in essence has managed to succeed without actually succeeding.”

“This, not his much-crowed-about deal-making prowess, is Trump’s most singular skill, I’ve heard in more than a dozen recent interviews.”

Trump Is Deeply Unpopular But His Base Holds

A new Washington Post-ABC News poll finds President Trump nears the 100-day mark of his administration as the least popular chief executive in modern times, a president whose voters remain largely satisfied with his performance, but one whose base of support has not expanded since he took the oath of office.

Key takeaway: “There are no signs of major slippage in support among those who voted for Trump. His approval rating among those who cast ballots for him stands at 94%. Among Republicans, it is 84%. Asked of those who voted for him whether they regret doing so, 2 percent say they do, while 96% say supporting Trump was the right thing to do.When asked if they would vote for him again, 96 percent say they would, which is higher than the 85 percent of Hillary Clinton voters who say they would support her again.”

House Democrats Grow Bullish After Trump Stumbles

“House Democrats are heading toward the 100th day of Donald Trump’s presidency with the kind of feel-good unity they haven’t experienced since the election,” the Washington Post reports.

“Coming off a rowdy recess where Republicans continued to be skewered by constituents on everything from health care to Russia to Trump’s tax returns, Democrats say walking through the political wilderness isn’t so bad — at least for now.”

“It’s a stunning reversal from the despair dominating the caucus just a few months ago when Trump entered the White House and Republicans seemed poised to wreak havoc on Democratic priorities.”

The Trump Resistance Builds

“From pink-hatted protesters to big town hall turnout, the anti-Trump resistance has been in full swing since January’s inauguration. The left is taking a page out of the Tea Party playbook, and building the resistance from the grassroots up,” Axios reports.

“We saw a similar rise on the right in 2009-2010 shortly after Obama was inaugurated, and a huge number of Republican lawmakers were voted into office. That movement shook up US politics and changed the face of the Republican Party, and we could see similar aftershocks here.”

French Voters Head to the Polls

“French voters go to the polls on Sunday in the first round of a presidential election that to the very end has brought little consensus or comfort and only one certainty: the result will be a political upheaval, whoever wins,” The Guardian reports.

“Even as they walk into their bureau de vote, many will still be undecided, faced with paper slips for an unprecedented 11 candidates, only four of them thought to be serious contenders for the Elysée palace. There is a nail-biting sense that anything could happen.”

FiveThirtyEight: “The top two finishers will proceed to a runoff election unless the top vote-getter receives more than 50 percent of the vote, in which case he or she wins outright. But if the polls are to be believed, that’s not going to happen. Instead, candidates representing the far right, far left, center and center-right all have a shot at securing one of the two spots in the runoff on May 7.”

“In short, the French presidential election is a mess.”

Ryan Says He Won’t Be Rushed on Health Care

Speaker Paul Ryan told GOP lawmakers “that they plan to devote their energy this week to keeping the federal government open, conspicuously avoiding an immediate commitment to take up health care despite pledges to do so by conservatives and the White House,” the Washington Post reports.

“Ryan added that the House will vote on a health-care bill when Republicans are sure they have the support to pass it.”

Axios: “There’s been a lot of talk about a health care vote this coming week, but leadership won’t be rushed by some arbitrary timeline — a big lesson Ryan’s office took from the failure of the first health care bill.”

Trump Reaches Beyond White House for Counsel

New York Times: “As Mr. Trump’s White House advisers jostle for position, the president has turned to another group of advisers — from family, real estate, media, finance and politics, and all outside the White House gates — many of whom he consults at least once a week.”

“The media mogul Rupert Murdoch is on the phone every week, encouraging Mr. Trump when he’s low and arguing that he focus on the economy rather than detouring to other issues. The developer Richard LeFrak is a soothing voice who listens to Mr. Trump’s complaints that cost estimates for the border wall with Mexico are too high. Sean Hannity tells the president that keeping promises on core Republican issues is crucial.”

“Mr. Trump’s West Wing aides, like President Bill Clinton’s staff two decades before, say they sometimes cringe at the input from people they can’t control, with consequences they can’t predict.”

Trump Schedules Rally on Same Night as Reporter Gala

President Trump announced his intention to hold a “big rally” in Pennsylvania next Saturday, a date which marks his 100th day in office, and coincides with the White House Correspondent’s Dinner—an event he previously declined to attend, CNBC reports.

Axios: “Holding a newsworthy rally the same night as the WHCD essentially forces White House reporters to either skip the annual event for the rally, or attend the dinner and risk the backlash for wearing fancy clothes, rubbing elbows with celebs, and laughing along with a comedian who has a history of ridiculing Trump.”

Trump Offended South Korea

President Trump’s apparently offhand comment after meeting with Chinese leader Xi Jinping — that “Korea actually used to be a part of China” — has enraged many South Koreans, the AP reports.

The historically inaccurate sentence “bumps up against a raft of historical and political sensitivities in a country where many have long feared Chinese designs on the Korean Peninsula. It also feeds neatly into longstanding worries about Seoul’s shrinking role in dealing with its nuclear-armed rival, North Korea.”

Melania Not In a Rush to Move to White House

Vanity Fair: “Woefully pliant as Melania may be, even she may have a breaking point. Over the course of reporting this story, for which her close friends declined to talk, an uneasy picture has emerged of their marital union. Melania’s unhappiness and the couple’s apparent lack of closeness are becoming more noticeable.”

“Despite assurances from her spokesperson, Stephanie Grisham, that Melania is embracing the role of First Lady, most signs point to a distinct lack of interest. And while Grisham says Mrs. Trump plans to move to the White House once their son, Barron, ‘finishes out the school year,’ there have been indications that she is in no particular rush.”

French Social Media Flooded with Fake News

“French voters have been deluged with fake news stories on their social media feeds ahead of the country’s presidential election, many from sources ‘exposed to Russian influence,'” The Independent reports.

“Researchers from Oxford University found up to a quarter of the political links shared on Twitter in France were based on misinformation. They were identified as deliberately false and expressed ‘ideologically extreme, hyper-partisan or conspiratorial’ views with logical flaws and opinions presented as facts.”

Why Trump Likes a Loose Schedule

President Trump “leaves large blocks of ‘private time’ on his Oval Office schedule for spontaneous meetings and phone chats with ex-aides, friends, media figures, lawmakers and members of his Cabinet — an old habit he’s carried over from his business days that has frustrated some West Wing aides,” Politico reports.

“Trump wrote in his 1987 book The Art of the Deal that his loose scheduling practices as a real estate magnate at the Trump Organization helped him be ‘imaginative.”