Published: Thu, August 02, 2018
Global Media | By Jackie Banks

Trump slams billionaire conservative Koch brothers as "total joke" in GOP

Trump slams billionaire conservative Koch brothers as

Trump's public attack, following a weekend in which he was criticized at a Koch network summer meeting, comes amid speculation that the Koch brothers are reconsidering their typically full-throated support for Republican candidates during the midterm elections.

Charles Koch told reporters at the gathering on July 29 that Trump's trade policies, including tariffs, could trigger severe economic fallout.

On Tuesday morning, President Donald Trump opened fire on Republican billionaire donors the Charles and David Koch, blasting them as "globalists" with bad ideas. "I have beaten them at every turn".

And little more than three months before the midterm elections, it leaves a marquee Republican Senate campaign without the assistance of one of the conservative movement's most powerful allies as their party fights to maintain control of Congress.

"They just flat-out threw him under the bus in front of this full room of people", said an attendee of the Koch conference who was not authorized to speak publicly.

A White House spokesman did not immediately respond to questions about when the billionaire president last bought groceries or anything else himself.

Donald Trump
Mr Trump’s policies have been at odds with the Koch brothers’ Americans For Prosperity group

"Heitkamp is seen as one of the most vulnerable Senate Democrats up for reelection", The Hill reported, noting that Trump crushed Hillary Clinton in the Roughrider State.

The midterm strategy could change in the coming weeks, but the Kochs now plan to ignore North Dakota's high-profile Senate contest, where three-term Republican Congressman Kevin Cramer is trying to unseat Democratic Sen.

Former Trump advisor Steve Bannon, in an interview published Sunday, told the Kochs to "shut up and get with the program". The Kochs have gone so far as to say they can not support a Republican in a critical Senate race, refusing to back Republican Kevin Cramer against incumbent North Dakota Democrat Heidi Heitcamp.

Some Trump loyalists were furious at perceived contradictions in the Koch network's behavior and anxious that it could complicate the president's 2020 re-election. The Koch network campaigned heavily for passage of tax cuts that Trump signed into law a year ago and praised his judicial picks.

"Bottom line, we need lawmakers to do more, so we need to expect more out of them". And the network already is engaged in Senate races to help Republicans in Wisconsin, Missouri, Tennessee and Florida.

Trump's comments come after leaders of the Koch Network called his White House "divisive", according to The Huffington Post. Instead they'll back Senator Heidi Heitkamp, the Democrat, because she voted to deregulate banks. In June, their conservative political network launched a campaign to challenge Mr. Trump over his stance on tariffs.

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