Trump goes to war with GOP establishment over relief checks, election integrity

President Donald Trump is going to war with the Republican Party establishment.

In a Christmas Eve tweet, Trump said that he will “never forget” those in his party who are not supporting him in his fight against a “rigged” election, even as House Republicans continue a revolt against his demand for $2,000 coronavirus relief checks.


The president singled out Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and others who he said rode his coattails, only to sit idly by as Trump battles what he called a “crooked and vicious foe.”

Trump and his base have said for weeks that Democrats stole the presidential election, but the GOP establishment has largely recognized Democratic nominee Joe Biden as the legitimate winner.

McConnell, for his part, has pushed back against calls to protest Biden’s Electoral College win when Congress gathers for a joint session on Jan. 6, Axios notes; meanwhile, Trump has called for primary challenges against disloyal Republicans.

Tensions between Trump and his party have also come to a head in a standoff over coronavirus spending and a key defense bill, with both measures including provisions that the president opposes.

GOP in revolt

Trump’s Twitter jab came the same day that House Republicans rebuffed his demand for $2,000 relief checks amid the pandemic. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) refused to consider the proposal, which was forwarded by Democrats for a vote by unanimous consent, according to Newsweek.

The president demanded by surprise Tuesday night that Congress go back to the drawing board after they sent him a $900 billion stimulus that offered $600 checks for struggling Americans, which Trump called a “disgrace.” While House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) endorse Trump’s proposal to raise the check amount to $2,000, it has met significant bipartisan resistance in Washington, with critics accusing him of threatening to torpedo any chance of relief.

“The best way out of this is for the president to sign the bill,” GOP Sen. Roy Blunt (MO) said this week, according to Newsweek. “And I still hope that’s what he decides to do.”

Trump’s demands are not expected to get past the Republican-controlled Senate, Newsweek noted — and in another flashpoint, McConnell already has plans to come back to Washington on Tuesday to override Trump’s veto of the National Defense Authorization Act, according to The Hill.

Trump has criticized the defense bill for its failure to address Big Tech censorship and for seeking to rename military bases named after Confederate generals, The Hill reports.

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