In some conservative circles, clouds of concern are building – particularly after a series of recent policy decisions by President Trump that are at direct odds with previously-held positions, including notable reversals on: NATO, the Ex-Im Bank, Chinese currency manipulation and even his view of Fed Chair Janet Yellen.
A shift that seemingly coincide with the reduced role of Chief Strategist Steve Bannon, once dubbed by Time Magazine “The Great Manipulator.”
Bannon has been at odds with President Trump’s son-in-law and fellow adviser Jared Kushner, who often sides with his wife, Ivanka Trump, on major policy matters.
It’s a political game of thrones that many conservatives fear will put the president to the left on climate change, abortion and policing – an affront to his base and in contrast to the campaign rhetoric that propelled him into office, said Rich Lowry of the National Review.
“This group [Jared, Ivanka and Gary Cohn] is all Democrats who have marinated for decades in the financial and social elite of Manhattan. If Jared and Ivanka end up running the joint, it’d be hard to overstate the turnabout from last year’s campaign,” Lowry said.
Cohn is the president’s chief economic advisor and a Goldman Sachs alum – the antithesis, say critics, of the “Drain the Swamp” movement.
“That said, he has, for whatever reason, chosen to surround himself with a number of establishment Republicans who, I don’t think, really understand Trumpism, don’t understand the larger currents that got him elected.”
Brent Bozell, of the Media Research Center, says President Trump has to energize his base with more than talk because…
“If they don’t do it, I absolutely guarantee you that conservatives will walk,” Bozell said.
But is that really true? Some analysts suggest, that just as they did during the campaign, President Trump’s base simply won’t care about his inconsistencies.
“they elected a man knowing that he is very flexible, ideologically. Throughout the campaign, Trump voters, when presented with many of the contradictions in his background -- he says he’s going to fight for you, but he outsourced jobs; he says he’s a successful businessman, but he had these bankruptcies – they said, ‘That’s not what’s interesting. That’s not of interest to us. We think he can get things done.’”