CLEVELAND -- Although it’s been a rocky relationship, congressional Republicans said Monday that they now feel they can work with a President Donald Trump who spent much of his campaign criticizing them.
“I think he realizes he has to, and that there is more in common between us than he thought,” said Rep. Peter King of Seaford in an interview Monday. “But it’s tough.”
Trump has targeted “do nothing” Republican congressmen nearly as much as Democrats in his inflamed rhetoric during the primaries in which he said Washington needs to be overhauled.
King said CEOs like the billionaire developer are similar to military generals when they enter politics: They think they can simply continue issuing orders. But a meeting earlier this month between Trump and Republican Congress members helped bridge that gap, and set up a road to working together should Trump beat Democrat Hillary Clinton in November.
“My goal in choosing someone for any office isn’t to find someone who agrees with me 100 percent,” said Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-Shirley). “But in terms of Donald Trump vs. Hillary Clinton, that’s not even close.”
“I’m much more in agreement with a large number of the issues with Trump that are very important to me,” Zeldin said, citing education and health care among them.
“There are more and more people every day unifying behind our party, our party’s candidate and our party’s priorities,” Zeldin said.
That meeting between Trump and congressional Republicans in Washington didn’t satisfy everyone, and several Republicans not only refuse to endorse Trump but have refused to attend the national convention in Cleveland (http://nwsdy.li/2a8TPId).
“We’re going to agree to disagree on some things,” said House Speaker Paul Ryan after that meeting. “What we do agree on is we don’t want another Democrat in the White House.”
In an earlier interview with amNY, King was asked what the 2016 campaign says about America?
“That Americans want change, that America is fed up and that America is willing to roll the dice and gamble on new leadership because they’re fed up with the old leadership.”
With Jamie Reysen