WASHINGTON ― Hat’s all, folks.
Republican lawmakers who once shied away from Donald Trump are now so committed to him, they emerged from their first strategy session since he was elected sporting their own “Make America Great Again” baseball caps.
Rep. Pete King (R-N.Y.) left the GOP meeting in the Capitol Tuesday clutching two of the homely chapeaus, which he said were for his grandchildren. He explained that Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.), who chairs the GOP conference, asked the Trump campaign for hats, and they were flown in from New York Monday night.
McMorris Rodgers, like other party leaders, did not come around to endorsing Trump until he had the nomination in hand. King once joked to the New York Daily News that he’d become a reporter if Trump won. “Listen, it’s not going to happen,” he told the paper last spring.
He had a different line Tuesday.
“We’re making the Republicans great again,” King said with a smile, describing the GOP’s morning meeting as “extremely positive” if not “euphoria.”
Some other members thought the members were euphoric.
“Oh, they’re excited. They’re so excited,” said Rep. Chris Collins (R-N.Y.), who did back Trump early. “This only happened because of Donald Trump.”
“It was Mr. Trump. He pulled [voters],” said Rep. Mike Kelly (R-Pa.), proudly displaying his headwear and adding that Trump transcended political parties. “It wasn’t really the Republican agenda that brought them out, it was the Trump agenda.”
Some of the lawmakers were more wry about their adoption of the billionaire and his signature slogan.
“Remember that film ‘Easy Money’ with Rodney Dangerfield?” said one hat-topped member leaving the meeting. “Remember when they made fun of him because of what he was wearing? And then it turned into a fashion statement? That’s what’s happening here.”