President-elect Donald Trump doesn’t need to enforce his own policies on Capitol Hill, instead he can rely on supporters nationwide to put pressure on Republicans that fall out of line, according to a Wednesday report from Politico.
The first time Trump’s army of Twitter followers and supporters flexed their strength targeted Rep. Bill Flores, who made comments in December that negatively compared Trump’s policies to those of traditional Republicans.
Trump’s policies “are not going to line up very well with our conservative policies,” Flores told supporters at an American Enterprise Institute (AEI) event, adding he felt Trump and the GOP could accomplish quite a bit in the coming years.
Breitbart was the first to strike. Reporters with the organization called the statements proof that House Republicans planned to “isolate and block President Donald Trump’s populist campaign promises.”
Sean Hannity jumped in next, reporting the representative’s comments on his nationally syndicated radio show. The resulting backlash from the Trump army was palpable.
“@RepBillFlores get in @realDonaldTrump way & we will burn your career down until you are reduced to selling life insurance,” tweeted one person. “@RepBillFlores you can go hang yourself!!” another wrote.
“Nobody wants to go first,” Rep. Mark Sanford told Politico. “People are naturally reticent to be the first out of the block for fear of Sean Hannity, for fear of Breitbart, for fear of local folks.”
The fear among House Republicans is only growing stronger as politicians grow more and more leery of opposing Trump in any way.
“If any politician in either party veers from what the voters clearly voted for in a landslide election … we stand at the ready to call them out on it and hold them accountable,” an unnamed Breitbart editor told Politico.
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