The TAKE with Rick Klein
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Take Trumpism and combine it with the potency of traditional Republicanism and a powerful force emerges – perhaps strong enough to deliver a sweeping tax cut, and a long-absent victory for the GOP.
But while this week could still bring a very big win for President Donald Trump and his party, it also reveals the mammoth leaps of faith they are collectively taking.
Start with the tax bill. We know it will worsen the deficit outlook, boost the fortunes of the wealthy, and provide questionable benefits to only some middle-income taxpayers – all in the hopes of giving the economy “rocket fuel” it may or may not need.
As for the politics, this a widely unpopular bill that’s being crafted on the fly and moving along on party lines. It’s telling that Democrats aren’t even tempted to vote for it – and that House Republicans from the northeast and California are on record in opposition.
Then turn to the president himself. This week saw the president’s tweets and public statements veer far off course into conspiracy theories, news bashing, and anti-Muslim sentiments.
Few elected Republicans said a word about the president’s words. Party unity held, for the moment, in the interest of passing something big this year.
It figures to make for a more pleasant December than Republicans otherwise would have had. But they may be trading a happy conclusion to 2017 for what might be a difficult road in 2018.
The RUNDOWN with John Verhovek
The intersection of pop culture and politics seems to pass right through the state of Alabama right now.
Embattled GOP senate candidate Roy Moore is in the thick of his campaign’s “church door to church door” strategy, stopping at a Baptist church outside of Birmingham last night. But Moore seems to have made the most waves on Twitter in recent days.
After late night host Jimmy Kimmel sent a comedian to Moore’s speech Wednesday night outside of Mobile, Moore tweeted at Kimmel, “.@jimmykimmel If you want to mock our Christian values, come down here to Alabama and do it man to man.” After some back and forth, Kimmel went right at the heart of the accusations of sexual misconduct against Moore, tweeting, “Ok Roy, but I’m leaving my daughters at home! P.S. – wear that cute little leather vest.”
Kimmel also went after Moore in his opening monologue last night,…