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By Phillip Stucky
Political statistician Nate Silver fact-checked a Sunday New York Times article that claims Republican senators can write their version of the health care plan without President Donald Trump’s input.
The NY Times’ article, written by Jennifer Steinhauer, is titled, “G.O.P. Senators, Pulling Away From Trump, Have ‘a Lot Less Fear of Him.’” Silver raised questions with the article’s account and pointed out that Senate Republicans follow Trump’s agenda 98 percent on average.
— Nate Silver (@NateSilver538) May 14, 2017
Steinhauer includes the fact that Republicans have largely worked with Trump in both the House and the Senate, but the writer goes on to assert that “with the White House lurching from crisis to crisis, the president is hampering Republican’s efforts to fulfill his promises.”
The political reporter included quotes from GOP senators about a potential break from the Trump administration.
“In Arizona, we grow them independent,” Sen. Jeff Flake of Arizona told the Times. “I expect people want someone who will say, “I’m voting with Trump on the good stuff and standing up to him on the not good stuff.’”
Sen. Jim Inhofe of Oklahoma concurred, stating, “There will be times when we disagree with the president. And when we do, we’ll be outspoken about it.”
“The article is about the fact that Republicans are moving forward with THEIR agenda even if (Trump)
supports it after the fact,” Steinhauer told The Daily Caller News Foundation. “I don’t pay much attention to Nate Silver, so I can’t really comment on his knowledge of the Senate.”
It should be noted Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown of Ohio actually provided the quote that appeared in the headline. “I’m hearing more and more of them say privately that they are more and more concerned,” he claimed. “More importantly, there is a lot less fear of him than there was just a month ago.”
Sen. Brown has a 7 percent out of 100 rating with the conservatively-based Heritage Action For America.