Once upon a time Republicans wanted to restrict executive overreach. “Time To Take Away The President’s Power To Impose Tariffs.” A boffo idea.

I’ve got a dim memory of when Congress did the legislating. “Congress has the power to stop the president from starting a trade war. The question is whether lawmakers will use that power, or whether they will continue to abdicate legislative responsibilities to the president. Article I of the US Constitution vests the power to set tariffs in Congress. The president has the power to impose tariffs at his discretion only because Congress has passed laws granting him that power. If Republicans in Congress think Trump has a bunch of dumb, destructive ideas about trade, they should pass new laws that strip him of that power.”

Old enough to remember when House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.) said there was agreement with President Trump’s agenda? “Members of the House Ways and Means Committee were also circulating a letter criticizing the tariffs while high-ranking Senate Republicans voiced their own opposition.  . . .  It’s unclear whether the GOP pushback will have any effect on Trump, who surprised fellow Republicans Thursday when he announced tariffs of 25 percent on steel and 10 percent on aluminum. He has repeatedly defended the plans, and after the statement from Ryan’s office Monday, the president said in Oval Office remarks that he was “not backing down.”

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Way back when there were conservative Democrats representing Pennsylvania districts outside the big cities. “Democrats in the area are excited to finally have a candidate with a fighting chance, but one reason for [Democrat Conor] Lamb’s success is that he’s taken a different approach than the national party. While many Democrats invoke Trump at every opportunity, Lamb is one of the few who isn’t bashing him. If Lamb succeeds or even comes close on March 13, his race might provide a blueprint for how other Democrats in heavily red districts can win in the midterm elections this fall: by appealing to the same voters Trump did—and criticizing the actions of the Republican-led Congress, rather than the president himself.”

In the good old days (like 2016) they used to be among our closest allies. “President Donald Trump lashed out Monday morning against two of America’s top international trading partners, attacking Canada for its treatment of U.S. farmers and demanding that Mexico do more to stop the cross-border flow of narcotics. Trump also suggested that Canada and Mexico could avoid forthcoming tariffs if they agree to a renegotiated trade deal.”

A while back Republicans used to be tough on Russia. Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) blasts Trump: “The FBI investigation began when it was discovered that the Russians had secret discussions with your foreign policy advisor about dissemination of stolen Clinton emails. And how can you criticize Obama for not doing more, when you do absolutely nothing?”

In times gone by, John F. Kelly was chief of staff and controlled staff. Oh, he still is? Kelly reportedly has been angered by what he views as freelancing by Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner. He blames the couple ” for changing Trump’s mind at the last minute and questions what exactly they do all day, according to one White House official and an outside ally.”

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