- Chip Somodevilla / Staff
US Senator Chuck Schumer has a theory: Donald Trump will help break the gridlock in Congress.
Schumer spoke Friday in front of a tech-industry audience at Civic Hall in New York, where he asserted that Trump had “torn the hard right apart.”
He also said the Republican frontrunner had helped expose ideological fault lines that could help build bipartisan compromise on some issues after the election.
“I do think that the gridlock will be broken, partially because Trump showed the fundamental contradiction between the Tea-Party voter and the oligarchs who have always funded the Tea Party and all these hard-right places,” Schumer said.
Schumer argued that Trump was the only Republican candidate who is “not in obeisance to the Koch brothers,” the billionaire businessmen who pledged to spend around $1 billion to help elect right-leaning lawmakers in the 2016 election cycle.
He continued, pointing out that Trump showed how many voters are not motivated by staunch ideological opposition to welfare programs, government spending and higher taxes.
The Tea Party people are not for cutting Medicare and Social Security. There’s only one Republican candidate who’s not for doing that. Trump. The Tea Party people are against free trade. Whether you’re for it or against it, there’s only one Republican candidate who opposes it. Trump. The Tea Party is not for taxing carried interest or increasing taxes on wealthy people. There’s one Republican candidate who said he would do carried interest and other things: Trump.
Far from endorsing Trump’s political positions, Schumer qualified that Trump’s positions and rhetoric on many issues is “awful.”
Schumer hasn’t always attempted to cast Trump as an agitator within the Republican Party.
Last month, the senator told a Texas radio station that Trump and the Republicans in Congress had the “same agenda.”
“Donald Trump and Senate Republicans share the same agenda, and Senate Republicans who are obstructing on the Supreme Court are doing everything they can to make sure that Trump chooses the next justice,” Schumer said. “Donald Trump won’t make America Great Again, but he will make Republicans the minority again.”
On Friday, Schumer, likely the future Democratic leader in the US Senate, also put an exact number on how many Electoral College votes he believes former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will win by in November.
“My prediction, this is just a prediction, I’ll stick my neck out. I’m for Hillary Clinton, I think Hillary Clinton is going to be the Democratic nominee. I think she is going to win by 325 electoral votes.”