Mitch McConnell may have a dark and twisted soul, but he’s a pretty good legislative tactician. That’s why he’s basically told Donald Trump to stay out of health care negotiations in the Senate, since he’d probably just screw things up. But Trump couldn’t help himself. After Sen. Dean Heller of Nevada announced that he would vote against the bill, Trump gave the OK to a Super PAC to run ads against Heller. According to the New York Times, McConnell was pissed:
Over the weekend, Mr. McConnell made clear his unhappiness to the White House after a “super PAC” aligned with Mr. Trump started an ad campaign against Senator Dean Heller, Republican of Nevada, after he said last week that he opposed the health care bill.
The majority leader — already rankled by Mr. Trump’s tweets goading him to change Senate rules to scuttle Democratic filibusters — called the White House chief of staff, Reince Priebus, to complain that the attacks were “beyond stupid,” according to two Republicans with knowledge of the tense exchange.
….The move against Mr. Heller had the blessing of the White House, according to an official with America First, because Mr. Trump’s allies were furious that the senator would side with Nevada’s governor, Brian Sandoval, a Republican who accepted the Medicaid expansion under the health law and opposes the Republican overhaul, in criticizing the bill.
As near as I can tell, the biggest tailwind Democrats have going for them right now is that Trump is such a cretin. I don’t know how likely it is that Republicans can pass a health care bill anyway, but there’s not much question that Trump is making it harder thanks to his bottomless ignorance of both policy and politics. Trump’s only tool is a wrecking ball, and that means he views every problem as a building to be razed. This is very definitely not how US senators like to be viewed, but Trump is too stupid to understand this.
And who knows? In the end, that might be the thing that saves Obamacare.