The Note: If there are two sides to Trump, Republicans will fight alongside both

He is fighting. But he's not fighting alone.

— -- The TAKE with Rick Klein

He is fighting. But he's not fighting alone.

The president on display at the State of the Union address offered a political and electoral roadmap for the party. It’s a story of GOP winning and a growing economy that had Republicans remembering the promise of Trump from the start.

The memo push is the latest, though surely not the last, example of the GOP rallying to Trump’s defense. The implications are substantial – but the president has plenty of company.

The RUNDOWN with MaryAlice Parks

Meeting in the nation’s capital, most boasted about the president's State of the Union address and said politically they felt they were on much sturdier ground than they were even just a few months ago.

The president told Republican lawmakers that they were unified and these state party leaders conveyed that, too. After all, even establishment folks like what they have seen in terms of policy, including deregulation, drilling and taxes.

A basic message about small government still plays well, party spokespeople argued, in races from the northeast to Alaska.

The TIP with Emily Goodin

Republican state chairmen and women and their staff who came in from the states – where the 2018 midterms will take place – are hopeful about their odds in November.

The mood at the Republican National Committee winter meeting at the Hilton Hotel in Washington, D.C., was upbeat and cheerful on Thursday.

Even though polling shows voters favor the Democratic candidate on the generic congressional ballot versus the GOP alternative, these Republicans feel the odds may so ever be in their favor.

The Senate races in particular have these leaders hopeful, particularly those red states who have Democratic incumbents. They mentioned that the government shutdown and voting against tax reform are two things that could hurt these incumbents in the months ahead.

President Donald Trump reflected that mood in his remarks at the GOP retreat in West Virginia on Thursday, where he rallied his party and mentioned the midterms.

“We have to get help from the other side or we have to elect more Republicans,” he said of the GOP trying to accomplish its agenda. “We have a good chance of doing that. ‘18 is going to be very interesting.”

Very interesting indeed.


  • The president will meet with defectors from North Korea at 11:30 a.m. and then travel to a Customs and Border Protection facility in Virginia about 2:30 p.m. and then fly with the first lady to Mar-a-Lago.
  • Michelle Obama will present the award for 2018 School Counselor of the Year at an event for the Reach Higher initiative at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.
  • GOP lawmakers continue their retreat at The Greenbrier resort in West Virginia.
  • The RNC winter meeting continues at the Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C.
  • This Week on ‘This Week’: George Stephanopoulos goes one-on-one with House Intelligence Committee ranking member Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., and House Intelligence Committee member Rep. Will Hurd, R-Texas, exclusively on “This Week” Sunday.

    "American history shows that, in the long run, weasels and liars never hold the field, so long as good people stand up." - Former FBI director James Comey in a tweet about the FBI raising concerns about the GOP memo.


    President Trump has reviewed classified GOP memo and is expected to formally consent to its release, sources say. "Right now, I think it will be that we tell the Congress, probably tomorrow, that the president is okay with it," a senior White House official who spoke on condition of anonymity told reporters on Air Force One. (Jon Karl, Cecilia Vega, Katherine Faulders, Benjamin Siegel and John Santucci)

    What do we know about the secret GOP memo? The contents of the controversial Republican memo alleging abuses by the Justice Department and FBI have been hotly debated and contested, and soon the American public will likely be able to read them in detail. (Justin Fishel and Benjamin Siegel)

    Ahead of midterms,Trump rallies Republicans, criticizes Democrats. President Donald Trump joined Republican congressional leaders at their retreat in White Sulphur Springs, W.Va., to present a united front for the party as they head into the 2018 midterm election. (Emily Goodin)

    Pence to visit Pennsylvania GOP stronghold targeted by Democrats in special election. A suddenly competitive congressional special election poised to set the tone for the 2018 midterms will welcome the presence of Vice President Mike Pence Friday, just days after campaign finance reports showed the Republican candidate significantly trailing his upstart Democratic opponent in fundraising. (Adam Kelsey)

    State of the Union viewership not 'highest in history,' despite President Trump's tweet. President Donald Trump’s first State of the Union address drew 45.6 million television viewers -- ratings that, contrary to a tweet from the president, were lower than the most-watched speeches from the past three presidents. (Cheyenne Haslett)

    Michelle Obama to scared Americans: 'Forget what they are saying in Washington.' Michelle Obama made her first television appearance since leaving the White House on the Ellen DeGeneres show, which was filmed earlier this week and aired this afternoon. (Meghan Keneally)

    In a series of three "epic" interviews with Vanity Fair, Anthony Scaramucci details his rise and quick exit from the White House, his experience with Reince Priebus, Steve Bannon, that interview with Ryan Lizza, and why he still thinks Donald Trump is a winner.

    The Daily Beast reports that Fox News primetime host Sean Hannity has been talking to President Trump often in recent weeks and urging him to release the GOP memo.

    The Note is a daily ABC News feature that highlights the key political moments of the day ahead. Please check back Monday for the latest.