aside Republican US Senator Bob Corker Is The President’s Latest Target

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If a republican US congressional legislator dares to voice an opinion that differs from the republican President Donald J. Trump, he or she can count on being the recipient of the president’s public dressing down and ire. This is true of Senator Bob Corker (R-TN.)

The senator shared his displeasure over the president undermining his Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, as he was attempting to develop diplomatic channels between the US and N Korea. The president had tweeted, “Rex Tillerson, our wonderful Secretary of State, is wasting his time trying to negotiate with Little Rocket Man.”

Image result for IMAGES OF PRESIDENT TRUMP'S TWEETS AGAINST BOB CORKER

Image result for IMAGES OF PRESIDENT TRUMP'S TWEETS AGAINST BOB CORKER

Image result for IMAGES OF PRESIDENT TRUMP'S TWEETS AGAINST BOB CORKER

Then Sen. Bob Corker made the mistake of speaking his mind by suggesting on 10/ 4/2017, that Gens. John Kelly and James Mattis as well Secretary of State Tillerson are the grown-ups that help protect our country from chaos.

Sen. Bob Corker is the Republican chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee and he was an early supporter of Donald Trump’s candidacy. Besides his describing the the White House as “an adult day care center,” he is warning us, that President Trump’s behavior is setting the nation “on the path to World War III.”

Fortunately, Senator Corker had already announced his plans to not run for re-election in 2018. But that did not stop the president from showering his wrath upon the recalcitrant lawmaker.

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Here’s the rest of the story…

On October 8, 2017, Noah Weiland, Mark Landler,  Maggie Haberman and Thomas Kaplan of the New York Times penned the following report, “Trump Goes After Senator Bob Corker, Who Bites Back.”

Excerpts:

“President Trump on Sunday (10/8/17) lashed out at Senator Bob Corker, the Tennessee Republican whose support will be critical to the White House on tax reform and the fate of the Iran nuclear deal, saying on Twitter that the senator had decided not to run for re-election because he “didn’t have the guts.”

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“Senator Bob Corker ‘begged’ me to endorse him for re-election in Tennessee,” Mr. Trump wrote. “I said ‘NO’ and he dropped out (said he could not win without my endorsement).” Mr. Trump also said that Mr. Corker had asked to be secretary of state. “I said ‘NO THANKS,’” he wrote.”

“Mr. Corker shot back a barbed response. “It’s a shame the White House has become an adult day care center,” he wrote on Twitter. “Someone obviously missed their shift this morning.”

“The president’s outburst amounted to an extraordinary public clash with a powerful, if lame-duck, Republican senator who holds sway over Mr. Trump’s domestic and foreign policy agenda. It also definitively ruptures what had been one of the few genuine relationships the president had developed with a Republican lawmaker on Capitol Hill.”

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“As Washington digested this latest spectacle of a president feuding with a leader of his party, Mr. Corker’s camp said that Mr. Trump had mischaracterized his conversations with Mr. Corker. “The president called Senator Corker on Monday (10/2/17) afternoon and asked him to reconsider his decision not to seek re-election and reaffirmed that he would have endorsed him, as he has said many times,” said Todd Womack, Mr. Corker’s chief of staff.”

“After a report last week that Secretary of State Rex W. Tillerson had once referred to Mr. Trump as a “moron,” Mr. Corker told reporters at the Capitol that Mr. Tillerson was one of three officials helping to “separate our country from chaos.” Those remarks were repeated on “Fox News Sunday,” which may have prompted Mr. Trump’s outburst.”

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“In August (2017), after Mr. Trump’s equivocal response to the deadly clashes in Charlottesville, Va., Mr. Corker told reporters that the president “has not yet been able to demonstrate the stability nor some of the competence that he needs to demonstrate in order to be successful.”

“If Senate Democrats end up unified in opposition to the promised tax bill, Mr. Trump would be able to lose the support of only two of the Senate’s 52 Republicans in order to pass it.”

“Mr. Corker, who is outspoken about the nation’s mounting debt, has already signaled deep reservations about the Republican effort to pass a tax overhaul, saying he would not vote for a tax bill that adds to the deficit.”

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“In addition, Mr. Corker, who leads the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, could play a key role if Mr. Trump follows through on his threat to “decertify” the Iran nuclear deal, kicking to Congress the issue of whether to restore sanctions on Tehran and effectively scuttle the pact.”

“Republicans could opt to hold off on sanctions but use the threat of them to force Iran back to the negotiating table — a strategy being advocated by Senator Tom Cotton, the Arkansas Republican who is a leading hard-liner on Iran. But that approach could leave the United States isolated, since European allies have made it clear they would rather stick with the deal.”

“Beyond the Iran deal, Mr. Corker’s committee holds confirmation hearings on Mr. Trump’s ambassadorial appointments. Were the president to push out Mr. Tillerson secretary of state — as some expect — Mr. Corker would lead the hearings on Mr. Trump’s nominee for the post.”

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“Mr. Trump’s budget chief, Mick Mulvaney, alluded to Mr. Corker’s political liberation, saying on “Meet the Press” that his decision not to run “sort of unleashes him to do whatever and say whatever he wants.”

“A former mayor of Chattanooga, Mr. Corker, 65, has carved out a reputation over two terms in the Senate as a reliable, not overly partisan, Republican, who helped maneuver President Barack Obama’s divisive nuclear deal with Iran to a vote on the Senate floor. That exposed him to fierce fire from conservatives, who blame him for not blocking the agreement.”

“Mr. Corker was briefly a candidate to be Mr. Trump’s running mate in 2016, but he withdrew his name from consideration and later expressed ambivalence about Mr. Trump’s campaign, in part because he said he found it frustrating to discuss foreign policy with him.”

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“For much of Mr. Trump’s byzantine selection process for secretary of state, Mr. Corker was a dark horse. Though he met with Mr. Trump, he drew little of the attention of Mitt Romney, who dined with the president-elect at an expensive Manhattan restaurant and became the object of a very public tug of war between Mr. Trump’s aides.”

“Known for his easygoing and affable manner, Mr. Corker’s positions on foreign policy issues are generally middle-of-the-road for a Republican. But he has shown occasional flashes of vehemence, particularly on subjects that concern him, like human trafficking.”

Image result for PHOTOS OF BOB CORKER AND Aung San Suu Kyi.

“In September 2016, Mr. Corker joined a small group of lawmakers at the residence of former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. for breakfast with Myanmar’s pro-democracy figure and government leader, Aung San Suu Kyi. Afterward, he bluntly faulted her for her reluctance to condemn the mistreatment of Myanmar’s Muslim Rohingya minority.”

“While we certainly appreciate the work Aung San Suu Kyi has done to ensure a democratic transition in Burma,” he said, “I am somewhat appalled by her dismissive reaction to concerns I raised this morning about the problem of human trafficking in her country.”

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“But Mr. Corker is remembered most — and vilified by critics — for his role in advancing the Iran nuclear deal. Though not a fan of the agreement — he once accused former Secretary of State John Kerry of having been “fleeced” in the negotiations with the Iranians — he was instrumental in winning an up-and-down vote on it.”

“Republicans are less likely to (approve the Iran nuclear deal) this time, with a fellow Republican in the White House, but Mr. Corker’s voice will be important to framing how the Senate decides to handle the agreement.”

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On October 4, 2017, Chris Cillizza of CNN penned the following report, “Bob Corker just told the world what he really thinks of Donald Trump.”

Excerpts:

Tennessee Republican Sen. Bob Corker suggested Wednesday that Gens. John Kelly and James Mattis as well Secretary of State Rex Tillerson are the “people that help separate our country from chaos.” 

Image result for photos of kelly mcmaster mattis“Asked directly by a reporter whether he was referring to Trump in using the word “chaos,” Corker, who announced last month he would retire in 2018, responded: “(Mattis, Kelly and Tillerson) work very well together to make sure the policies we put forth around the world are sound and coherent. There are other people within the administration that don’t. I hope they stay because they’re valuable to the national security of our nation.”

 Stop for a second and re-read that last paragraph.
“The sitting Republican chairman of the Senate foreign relations committee is suggesting that if Tillerson was removed from office (or quit), the national security of the country would potentially be in danger. And he’s refusing to knock down — and thereby affirming — the idea that Trump is an agent of chaos who pushes policies that are not always “sound” or “coherent.”
That. Is. Stunning.
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GENERALS MATTIS/ MACMASTER/ KELLY
 ” Corker also blasted Trump for undermining Tillerson — most recently with a weekend tweet suggesting that the secretary of state’s diplomatic work to solve the North Korea crisis would fail.”
“I told Rex Tillerson, our wonderful Secretary of State, that he is wasting his time trying to negotiate with Little Rocket Man,” Trump tweeted Sunday morning (October 1, 2017).”
“Corker said that Tillerson is “in an incredibly frustrating place,” adding: “He ends up not being supported in the way I would hope a secretary of state would be supported. … He’s in a very trying situation — trying to solve many of the world’s problems without the support and help I’d like to see him have.”
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REX TILLERSON
 “Those comments land amid reports that tensions between Trump and Tillerson are worse than ever. They also come on the same day Tillerson held an impromptu press conference to dismiss that he has ever considered resigning his post, but also refused to deny that he had called the President a “moron” during a moment of pique..”
“This is also not the first time that Corker, who was once mentioned as a possible vice presidential pick and was on the short list for secretary of state, has been overtly and harshly critical of Trump. Corker drew national headlines in August when he suggested that Trump “has not yet been able to demonstrate the stability nor some of the competence that he needs to demonstrate in order to be successful.”
“Trump responded back via Twitter: “Strange statement by Bob Corker considering that he is constantly asking me whether or not he should run again in ’18. Tennessee not happy!”
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SENATOR CORKER/ PRESIDENT TRUMP
“Trump and Corker eventually huddled at the White House to make amends and, according to reports, Trump asked Corker to run for a third term. Less than two weeks later, Corker announced he was retiring.”
“Corker’s comments Wednesday (October 4, 2017) are rightly read as a continuation of his August remarks. Then, he openly questioned Trump’s stability and competence. Now he is making clear that if not for Tillerson, Mattis and Kelly, Trump would be leading the nation — and the world — into chaos.”
“There’s no question that Corker feels freer to speak his mind without the worry of angering the President and potentially stirring up a serious primary challenge. But what’s even more important/scary to contemplate: If this is Corker saying what he really thinks about Trump, what must the rest of Republicans in the Senate and House think of their President? And when will they speak out?”

10 comments

  1. Hi Gronda, this broke on basic prime in Aus about 11 min before this extensive post. Intimated another bitter voice towards the White House. May I say personally, that the prior posturing regards North Korea having been quietly decided, the baleful eye turns toward Iran. There is a terrifying narrative for global futures seemingly a tweet away. Have you ever considered if the President is a puppet, if so to whom, and is the puppet holding scissors. (honestly mate, Hugs, don’t answer, im full of it)…

  2. Dear Gary J.,

    I’m not certain that the situation with the US in regards to N Korea is at all settled. Iran is just another headache that we don’t need.

    I keep hearing Sen. Corker’s words ALONG THE LINES, “the president’S reckless threats are going to lead us into WWIII.”

    He is frightening.

    Hugs, Gronda

  3. Gronda, there is only one constant in all of these spats. The target is the only one who changes. And, what is not ironic given his history, is many of the targets are advisors or former advisors. The MITWH cannot afford losing allies as there will come a time when he needs them.

    As I mentioned to Jill on my post today, I am not a fan of name calling, as it diminishes the offices. Yet, what Trump will find is politicians who are not running can push back on him with fewer repercussions. And, there will be a cumulative effect as the push back gets broader and louder. Keith

  4. Dear Keith,

    There are three senators who do not fear repercussions.

    They are Senators Bob Corker and John McCain because neither are running for elected office, again.

    Senator Lisa Murkowski already defied the republicans supporting a candidate to the right of her and he did win the primary. But she ran as an independent where voters had to write her name on the ballots, and she won, bigly.

    So, she is immune. Senator Collins of Maine may be running for governor which may open up her spot for a democrat. The point is that she is not easily intimidated.

    This is going to make his enacting any significant legislation, so much more difficult.

    Hugs, Gronda

    • Gronda, reading some of the headlines today online, the MITWH lives in an alternate reality. My favorite was about Puerto Rico as he said no one could have done what he has done in Puerto Rico – he is right, in this case, but not the way he intended it. No one could have insulted Puerto Ricans more. Keith

  5. There may be folk running for office who may be making calculations as to whether they can garner more votes by defying the president.
    He has a loyal fan base amongst the public. But can he command any sustainable loyalty amongst the political class?

    • Dear Roger,

      Most republicans in the US Senate don’t have that luxury as they need the president’s base of supporters on their side. They will lose elections without these voters. So,” we the people” are stuck with legislators who are afraid of losing their next election/ and or that big money donors will decide to find a more conservative candidate to back against the incumbent.

      Few republicans are in a position to defy the president and republican party leaders.

      Hugs, Gronda.

      • I suspect there are wheels within wheels here Gronda.
        The fool is loose amongst a System and causing damage.
        A System does not take kindly to that, nor does he have the luxury of a majority in the country.
        When cometh the first true crisis (against Russia, China or economically Europe) we shall see, we shall see.

        In the meantime all the best to you and keep up your sterling work on your blog.
        Roger

        • Dear Roger,

          Thanks for your words of encouragement. Right now his nemesis looks like Puerto Rico. His racist leanings have been on full display.

          Recently he made the mistake of calling the Governor of the US Virgin Islands, President Kenneth Map. He didn’t seem to grasp that the US Virgin Islands is a US territory and that he is their president.

          Hugs, Gronda

        • Why am I not surprised!
          (I wonder if some of his more cunning staff, sensing an opportunity, are making no attempt to stop him blathering and thus make profit from the ensuing chaos of his fall by switching sides at just the right time….. It’s an old trick that the ‘nobility’ of Europe were playing for centuries , bound to have travelled down the centuries and across the miles)

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