President Donald Trump is joined by the Congressional leadership and his family before formally signing his cabinet nominations into law, in the President’s Room of the Senate, at the Capitol in Washington, Friday, Jan. 20, 2017. From left are Vice President Mike Pence, the president's wife Melania Trump, their son Barron Trump, and Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, R-Wis. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, Pool)

Trump is Just Not Good At This…At All

It will have to go down as one of the greatest charades of all time, this notion that Donald Trump was the “master negotiator” Republicans and the country needed in 2016. Remember that was the selling point; that was why he was preferable to Cruz, Rubio, Walker and the whole gang of documented conservatives who actually had governing experience. Trump would “get things done.”

But he hasn’t. At all.

Not only that, but far from being someone who can “get things done,” Trump has shown a propensity for “screwing things up.” And the most recent example of what is turning into an embarrassing litany of blown lay-ups for the president is his handling of this DACA Dreamer mess.

Remember that DACA is not law – it is a presidential decree (memo) that was executed by President Obama in contravention of the Constitution. He didn’t like that Congress wouldn’t pass his immigration law, so he pretended he could write laws himself, became dictator-for-a-day, and began enforcing what he wanted to enforce. His lap-dog media did nothing to draw attention to this abuse of power, and his sycophantic followers cheered it.

Then Donald Trump won the election promising to repeal all of President Obama’s unconstitutional overreaches. DACA was one of those, obviously. So the President sent his Attorney General, Jeff Sessions out to face the media “you’re tearing families apart,” “you’re evil and heartless” frenzy to explain the issue. And Sessions did so admirably.

But then, inexplicably, this “Master Negotiator,” Mr. “The Art of the Deal,” took to Twitter and proclaimed:

“Congress now has 6 months to legalize DACA (something the Obama Administration was unable to do). If they can’t, I will revisit this issue!”

Sorry, there’s no way that Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio would have been that dense. This is completely giving away any and all leverage for a deal in a single tweet. It’s undermining Congressional Republicans attempts to force any kinds of immigration concessions from Democrats who now know they will get what they want in the end regardless.

You honestly can’t be any worse at making a deal than this.

But it’s more than that, actually. This tweet obviously indicates that Trump’s problem with Obama’s DACA decree isn’t that it is unconstitutional. If Trump says that he plans to “revisit” it later if Congress doesn’t act, what else could that mean besides he will consider doing the very thing Obama did – rule by presidential fiat. You know, the very thing he just dispatched his Attorney General to offer as justification for ending the program in the first place.

Which means it is only logical that the media – and all remotely interested parties – will be left with the question: what is the real motivation for Trump ending DACA? If it’s not the unconstitutional nature of the deferrals (which it should be, and which Sessions said it was), if Trump is willing to offer the deferrals for Dreamers in 6 months should Congress not act, why are we doing this anyway?

Did I mention how absolutely awful this guy is at deals?

And finally, consider what is likely to be the result. Because of Trump’s ham-handed handling of all this, Congressional Republicans will have little to no choice but to make this their top legislative priority moving forward. Forget tax reform, forget regulatory reform, forget Obamacare repeal…all that will be replaced with codifying amnesty for the so-called Dreamers.

Here’s a question for the Trump supporting conservatives: when exactly was that mentioned in the campaign as being a top priority for Republicans should they win the election? Yet, write this down – once this is passed with bipartisan support, Trump will hail this as one of his great achievements. And the way it’s looking, this may be his only achievement.

Think about that. Control of both houses of Congress and the White House and the only major piece of legislation the Republicans under Trump will secure is the legalized amnesty of almost a million illegal immigrants.

You just can’t be much worse at this than Trump is proving to be.

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Peter Heck

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