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Opinion Morning Bits: The GOP and Trump deserve one another

President Trump debates with House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), left, during a meeting in the White House on Dec. 11 in Washington. (Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post)
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President Trump deserves this lecture on good governance, from the ACLU, no less. “Trump’s petulant performance in the Oval Office today shows his negotiating position for what it really is: one of a president so obsessed with his wasteful, unnecessary border wall that he promised, on camera, to withhold paychecks from tens of thousands of federal workers if he doesn’t get his way.”

The majority leader gets run over by support for a bill that deserves a vote. “Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) said on Tuesday the Senate will take up legislation to overhaul the nation’s criminal-justice system as early as the end of this week. Mr. McConnell had emerged as the major hurdle facing the legislation, which was endorsed by President Trump last month and has bipartisan support in the House and Senate.”

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Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) shows she deserves the speakership, countering Trump’s condescending remark about holding the Senate. “Mr. President, please don’t characterize the strength that I bring to this meeting as a leader of the House Democrats who just won a big victory. … What the president is representing in terms of his cards over there are not factual. We have to have an evidence-based conversation about what does work and what money has been spent and how effective it is.” Ouch.

The most incompetent administration ever deserves the most incompetent chief of staff ever. “A senior White House official told me, in a sign of the depth of the current difficulties, that even former chief of staff Reince Priebus has been brought up as a possible replacement for [John F.] Kelly.”

When you carry the president’s water, you deserve to get dunked. “Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) on Tuesday warned that the American people don’t want to see a partial government shutdown and expressed hope it could be avoided hours after President Trump in a meeting with Democratic leaders said he was willing to shut down the government for tougher border security.”

Ron Brownstein’s analysis always deserves your attention. “The 2018 exit polls showed that among both working-class white men and women who are not evangelicals, Democratic House candidates won a measurably higher share of the vote than Hillary Clinton did in the 2016 presidential race. In the heavily blue-collar Rust Belt states that tipped the 2016 election to Trump — particularly Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania — even small improvements might be enough to tilt the result the other way.” Read the whole thing.

Hey, we get the government we deserve. Leon Panetta on the Oval Office fight: “We have just seen a perfect example of how not to govern the country. To have that kind of dispute and to do it openly before the press … to have everybody yelling at one another, I think that it has just sent a terrible message to the American people.”

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