Tennessee Sen. Bob Corker, the chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee and a one-time finalist to be President Trump’s Secretary of State, delivered one of the most biting critiques yet of the commander in chief Sunday in response to a presidential tweetstorm. “It’s a shame the White House has become an adult day care center,” Corker tweeted. “Someone obviously missed their shift this morning.” He didn’t stop there. In a later interview with the New York Times, Corker delivered a blistering broadside at the Oval Office, suggesting Trump’s unpredictability and refusal to listen to the advice of his top aides was setting the nation on a path toward World War III.
Corker, of course, is a Republican, and said the majority of his colleagues share his perspective, even if they’re unwilling to voice it publicly. Corker is free, in large part because he set to retire from the Senate at the end of the current Congress. But it would be a mistake to read Corker’s critique as just a reaction to Trump’s attack. He was sending up a warning signal to the West Wing that Republican lawmakers are running out of patience with the White House. Don’t expect too many GOP lawmakers to follow Corker’s lead — they want to win reelection after all — but his criticism is fresh indication that Republicans don’t fear Trump. (They fear his voters.) And that should Trump come knocking for help in the comings months and years, he shouldn’t expect blind support because of the “R” after his name.
Trump rolls back contraceptive mandate. The White House lays out its price for a DACA fix. And Pence walks out.
Here are your must reads:
Bob Corker Says Trump’s Recklessness Threatens ‘World War III’
Top GOP lawmakers unleashes on Trump [New York Times]
Trump Seeks Border Wall, Crackdown on Unaccompanied Minors for ‘Dreamer’ Deal
Democrats say he breached agreement [Reuters]
Traveling in Style: Trump’s White House Wrestles With Cabinet Costs
A half-dozen agencies under scrutiny [Washington Post]
U.S. Pressure on North Korea’s Global Ties Bears Fruit
Campaign to close Pyongyang’s embassies and curb its business activities world-wide has led more than 20 nations to restrict operations [Wall Street Journal]
Anger, Praise in Scotland as Losses Mount at Trump’s Resorts
Business trouble for the president [Associated Press]
The Trump Administration Just Rolled Back the Birth Control Mandate.
Here’s What That Means [TIME]
“Bob Corker gave us the Iran Deal, & that’s about it. We need HealthCare, we need Tax Cuts/Reform, we need people that can get the job done!” — President Trump’s Twitter riposte to Corker’s tweet
“I asked @VP Pence to leave stadium if any players kneeled, disrespecting our country. I am proud of him and @SecondLady Karen.” — Trump taking credit for Pence walking out of an Indianapolis Colts game after some San Francisco 49ers players took a knee during the National Anthem
Bits and Bites
Google uncovers Russian-bought ads on YouTube, Gmail and other platforms [Washington Post]
Melania Trump saying 2 words more often: first lady [Associated Press]
White House Finalizing Executive Order to Expand Health Care Plans [Associated Press]
EPA Chief Announces Roll Back of Obama-Era Clean Power Plan [Associated Press]
President Trump Adopted a Spanish Accent to Say ‘Puerto Rico’ [Associated Press]