Quick Takes: Your Friday Roundup of Republican Failure

* Rich Lowry laments that Republicans might be losing momentum.

If Trump turns out simply not to have any interest in legislation, it likely won’t augur a period of strong congressional governance, but of drift and perhaps outright failure.

Capitol Hill is dependent on Trump, not just to sign bills, but to lead. Republican don’t need him merely to be president; they need him to be a good president, which means that in his busy days he must find a little time for Congress.

* I was reminded of what Grover Norquist told CPAC back in 2012.

We don’t need a president to tell us in what direction to go. We know what direction to go…We just need a president to sign this stuff. We don’t need someone to think it up or design it. The leadership now for the modern conservative movement for the next 20 years will be coming out of the House and the Senate.

The requirement for president?

Pick a Republican with enough working digits to handle a pen to become president of the United States.

I’ll leave it for you to come up with the punch line about whether or not Trump’s tiny digits are enough to get the job done.

* The Trump administration barred a bunch of news outlets from a briefing and that is serious. But I agree with Josh Marshall.

Don’t get me wrong. As I wrote a month or so ago in a similar context, it is far preferable to have a President and a White House who believe in democratic and American values. But we don’t. It is best to recognize that fact and act accordingly. Whining is never a good look for journalists, for myriad reasons. Not least of which is that it plays into all the tools that authoritarians mobilize against a free press and American values. As I also wrote in that post, the answer to attacks on journalism is always more journalism. The most consequential reporting being done right now isn’t happening in the briefings. It’s happening with the ‘anonymous sources’ that President Trump says need to stand before him for retribution.

* Trump told the CPAC crowd today that people were so excited to hear him speak that “there are lines that go back six blocks. I tell you that because you won’t read about it.” He’s right. You won’t read about it. Because it didn’t happen.

This is not a huge story – nor will it come as a surprise to anyone. But the lengths this man will go to in order to feed his ego with lies are truly astounding.

* Alexandra Petri has a delightful summary of Trump’s speech today at CPAC.

President Trump’s Conservative Political Action Conference speech included everything that was good and nothing that was bad. It is a shame, he said during the speech, that the fake media is always citing “sources” to tell stories that are not favorable. In keeping with these new guidelines, I will cite no sources whatsoever when I tell you how wonderful this speech was.

Her “breakdown of a Trump speech” chart might come in handy for future reference.

* Finally, can you tell I’m a little punchy after a week of covering all this nonsense? It’s clearly time for a break – and a little reminder from Amos Lee.

Nancy LeTourneau

Nancy LeTourneau is a contributing writer for the Washington Monthly. Follow her on Twitter @Smartypants60 .