Commentary, News

Politico: Trump using cash to buy Tillis’ backing on impeachment

Sen. Thom Tillis

The sordid saga of America’s mob-boss-in-chief and his rapidly-rotting presidency continues to grow darker by the day. The latest case in point: a story from Politico entitled “Trump lures GOP senators on impeachment with cold cash.” Not surprisingly, one of the four vulnerable senators from whom Trump is purchasing impeachment protection: the once quasi-independent, but now utterly loyal Trump toady, Thom Tillis of North Carolina. This is from the story:

President Donald Trump is rewarding senators who have his back on impeachment — and sending a message to those who don’t to get on board.

Trump is tapping his vast fundraising network for a handful of loyal senators facing tough reelection bids in 2020. Each of them has signed onto a Republican-backed resolution condemning the inquiry as “unprecedented and undemocratic.”

Conspicuously absent from the group is Maine Sen. Susan Collins, a politically vulnerable Republican who’s refused to support the resolution and avoided taking a stance on impeachment. With his new push, Trump is exerting leverage over a group he badly needs in his corner with an impeachment trial likely coming soon to the Senate — but that also needs him.

Republican senators on the ballot next year are lagging in fundraising, stoking uncertainty about the GOP’s hold on the chamber, and could use the fundraising might of the president. Trump’s political operation has raked in over $300 million this year.

On Wednesday, the Trump reelection campaign sent a fundraising appeal to its massive email list urging donors to provide a contribution that would be divided between the president and Colorado Sen. Cory Gardner, Iowa Sen. Joni Ernst, and North Carolina Sen. Thom Tillis. Each of the senators are supporting the anti-impeachment resolution despite being endangered in 2020.

The pay-off to Tillis comes as little surprise. Ever since his infamous and humiliating flip-flop on Trump’s cockamamie border emergency scam, Tillis has displayed all the backbone of sea sick jellyfish vis a vis Trump. Early in his Senate term Tillis was seen as bit of a moderate — even a maverick — on a number of issues. Today, that’s ancient history as the freshman senator has attached himself to Trump at the hip — no matter how low the President’s behavior sinks.

According to Public Policy Polling, there’s reason to doubt that the strategy is working. This is from the group’s latest poll release:

Thom Tillis continues to be quite unpopular, with only 22% of voters approving of the job he’s doing to 44% who disapprove. In addition to being broadly unpopular with Democrats (9/59) and independents (22/48), he continues to have tepid numbers within his own party. Just 40% of Republicans approve of the job he’s doing to 22% who disapprove, which is why he’s having to beat back a primary challenge from Garland Tucker. Although we didn’t test any head to heads with Tillis this time, a poll we did last month found him trailing Democratic challenger Cal Cunningham 45-43.

Stay tuned — the story doesn’t figure to brighten anytime soon.

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