‘We’ll wait for the early morning tweets. Let’s see how they look,’ says one Democratic leader.
Congressional Democrats heard President Donald Trump dangle olive branches in their direction on Tuesday night — but most departed his much-anticipated speech still deeply skeptical of Trump’s interest in bipartisanship.
Trump threaded two ideas that retain Democratic appeal into his otherwise GOP-friendly remarks: an infrastructure plan that includes public investment and criticism of high prescription drug prices. He even earned some Democratic praise on the divisive topic of Obamacare for proposing that governors get “the resources and flexibility” they need to avoid cutting Medicaid coverage.
Yet the Democratic goodwill Trump earned with those priorities paled next to the disappointment among the minority, whose votes he will need to push many of his key priorities through the Senate. Most Democrats left Trump’s speech predicting that his newly softened tone would not translate into different strategy or policy. And many panned a controversial new immigration proposal from the president.
“Yeah, this wasn’t one of his crazier speeches, but at some point he’s actually got to follow through and do the things he’s talking about,” Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) said in an interview.