Koch brothers total joke in Republican circles, says Trump

Koch brothers total joke in Republican circles, says Trump

Koch brothers total joke in Republican circles, says Trump

President Trump blasted the conservative mega-donor Koch brothers on Tuesday as a "total joke" and promised supporters he would be "a puppet for no one", amid rising tensions over trade and other administration policies.

WASHINGTON-President Donald Trump pushed back against the Koch brothers Tuesday, a step that came after a summer meeting held by the Republican mega-donors' network resulted in some stark differences with the president.

Americans For Prosperity, the political and policy arm of the Koch network, declined to support congressman Kevin Cramer's bid to unseat politically vulnerable Democratic Senator Heidi Heitkamp.

"I made...them richer", he continued in a second tweet.

"Their network is highly overrated, I have beaten them at every turn", Trump said.

Trump has defended his trade policies, saying he backs free but "fair" trade to support USA workers.

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But this latest feud - following last weekend's gathering at which Koch-affiliated officials sought to distance their operation from Trump - has exposed the rift between a president pushing his party toward populism, and establishment Republicans espousing the long-standing policy of free trade.

Trump has consistently framed his policies as pro-worker, often citing GDP growth and job numbers at near-record highs to bolster his case, though the vast majority of economists say his policies could lead to ruin for some sectors of the economy. And some Trump loyalists were furious with the Kochs' work to undermine Trump and his agenda even before Monday's news dropped. "I think this network supports people who truly respect those principles". The network's decision earlier this year to run a digital ad praising her vote to ease regulations on small- and medium-sized banks annoyed some network members, said Doug Deason, a Dallas investor who is a longtime contributor to the network and has close ties to Trump and Vice President Pence.

"Bottom line, we need lawmakers to do more, so we need to expect more out of them". Bannon asked in a brief interview with The Associated Press. We do the ground game because we're not going to equivocate on who we're going to support. The group says it still plans to focus its resources on helping Republican Senate candidates in Tennessee, Florida and Wisconsin.

At the same time, Bevin defended Trump's push to apply billions of dollars in tariffs on goods from China, Canada, Mexico and the European Union. They never wanted to be Democrats.

- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 31, 2018Americans for Prosperity president Tim Phillips announced at a donor summit on Monday in Colorado Springs, Colo. that the network would not support Rep.

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