The Freedom Caucus will hurt the entire Republican agenda if they don't get on the team, & fast. We must fight them, & Dems, in 2018!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 30, 2017
“Trump’s tweet has all the hallmarks of ineffectually blowing off steam,” the National Review editorial board wrote, “since it’s hard to imagine the president and his supporters following through with the organizing and funding it would take to try to take out conservative members representing deep-red districts.”
Organizing and funding were two of Trump's weaknesses during his White House run. During the Republican primary, Ted Cruz outmaneuvered Trump in the delegate game, and the billionaire did little fundraising, as he lent tens of millions of dollars to his campaign. (He later converted the loans to donations.)
In the general election, Trump ramped up fundraising efforts, in coordination with the Republican National Committee, but lagged far behind Democratic rival Hillary Clinton. For much of the fall, his ground game was practically invisible, even in battleground states.
Trump won despite his lack of organizing and funding. He actually seems rather proud of this fact.
“We spent a lot less money, and we won,” he said at the White House in late January. “That’s good, right? Isn’t that a good thing, when you can spend less and win?”
Sure. But the reality remains that Trump isn't very good at organizing and funding, and the National Review believes those deficiencies make his warning to the Freedom Caucus rather weak.
Trump is a unique political figure — a man who ran a campaign that was deeply flawed, by conventional measures, and won anyway. His unorthodox strategy has no record of success in other races. And, after the recent health-care battle, the scoreboard reads: Freedom Caucus, 1; Trump, 0.