New Arizona Poll: 62% Disapprove Of Sen. Flake's Performance

Sen. John Barrasso R-Wyo. left joined by Senate Majority Leader Mitch Mc Connell of Ky. speaks during the first news conference since the Republican health care bill collapsed last week due to opposition within the GO

But it is Flake's self-reflection that is perhaps most insightful.

Flake is taking a less impressive approach: Complaining loudly about Trump and doing very little about him.

One analyst said the challenge for Flake is to walk the tightrope between the Tea Party and Trump wing of the party in the primary and then "nimbly pivot from trying to dispatch any Republican primary candidate to an appeal in the general election".

"But where does such capitulation take us?" "If this was our Faustian bargain, then it was not worth it".

Ward, the lone challenger, told NBC News that Trump voters in the state will not take well to Flake's penchant for pushing back against the president, calling him one of the "original never Trump-ers". The president's support for protectionist trade policies is harmful, his unwillingness to reform entitlement programs unacceptable, his surrender on the budget a betrayal. The other vocal GOP Trump critic is Senator Dean Heller of Nevada who is also facing re-election next year. Three Republican senators (and Flake wasn't one of them) who kneecapped the skinny repeal were hailed as heroes; the bar for actual Republican resistance is so low it might as well be six feet under. As conservatives warned at the time, failing to defund Obamacare in 2013 would make full repeal almost impossible. "That doesn't mean we agree with everything he says and does, but we still support his agenda, his presidency, and we're not going to fumble the ball". The 60-vote threshold applies to most other legislation in order to advance it to a final vote.

Flake: This has been a long time building. He says the Trump presidency is "erratic" and "in chaos".

"There was a time when the leadership of the Congress from both parties felt an institutional loyalty that would frequently create bonds across party lines in defense of congressional prerogatives in a unified front against the White House, regardless of the president's party", Flake writes.

Even the best of us, it turns out, are tempted to make some tradeoffs in the name of ideology.

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Meanwhile, the unusual specter of an American president's seeming affection for strongmen and authoritarians created such a cognitive dissonance among my generation of conservatives-who had come of age under existential threat from the Soviet Union-that it was nearly impossible to believe.

Flake self-identifies as a Goldwater conservative. " A principled constitutional conservative?". Conservative activists had accused Graham of attempting to meddle in their efforts, according to an Arizona Republic account of a January 2016 meeting. Flake's idols are RINOs.

The Republican Party has only nominated two true conservatives for president: Barry Goldwater and Ronald Reagan. Brent Bozell, whose father ghostwrote Goldwater's book, thinks not.

"The new president would not merely demonstrate a preference for specific sectors of the economy, he would meddle in the economy by advocating for - or conversely, by intimidating - specific companies", wrote Flake. While he waxes poetically about conservative principles, his Conservative Review Liberty score is an abysmal 53%, also known as: "F". He went on to say it's more than the economy, slamming so called conservatives who refused to vote for the "pro-life" bill to repeal and replace Obamacare.

The criticisms come despite Flake's conservative bona fides.

"The media need to know, when reporting on Senator Flake and his 'book, ' that the author is a deceiver out for personal and financial gain". For that promise, Flake argues, Republicans gave up their principles.

A Republican senator's denouncement of Donald Trump may have cost him his own reelection bid. "If ultimately our principles were so malleable as to no longer be principles, then what was the point of political victories in the first place?"

Asked what would finally elicit vociferous objections from Republicans, Flake said the firing of special prosecutor Robert Mueller. His interests are conservative political philosophy, the American founding, and progressive rock.

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