The Washington Times Daily - - POLITICS - BY JEN­NIFER HARPER

It will be in­ter­est­ing to watch one of the world’s most canny deal­mak­ers en­ter the White House. Pres­i­dent-elect Don­ald Trump knows that deal­mak­ing is an art rather than sci­ence, and wrote a best-sell­ing book on the sub­ject. There’s fi­nesse, strat­egy, imag­i­na­tion, and mus­cle in­volved. But part of the knack is sens­ing which friends are gen­uine when the go­ing gets tough, tricky and com­pli­cated.

Which brings us to Capi­tol Hill — a dra­matic tableau for deal­mak­ing, rife with po­lit­i­cal theater and huge sums of money, but not likely to phase Mr. Trump once he learns the lan­guage and the stage cues. Does he have friends there?

“Repub­li­can law­mak­ers and other po­lit­i­cal heavy­weights are scram­bling to jump on Don­ald Trump’s band­wagon a month out from In­au­gu­ra­tion Day, but the pres­i­dent-elect may won­der how many of them are true friends,” writes Alexan­der Bolton, a staff writer for The Hill.

He points out that when the House Trump Cau­cus met in the Can­non Of­fice Build­ing some two weeks ago, 50 law­mak­ers were present.

“But only a hand­ful of those mem­bers were there from the be­gin­ning,” Mr. Bolton says, not­ing that Mr. Trump is known for plac­ing “high value on loyalty,” and will likely seek out his ear­li­est back­ers to take his agenda to Congress.

So who are the FOTs — Friends of Trump? Mr. Bolton sup­plies the list of “Trump’s big­gest al­lies” on Capi­tol Hill:

Rep. Chris Collins of New York, the first mem­ber of Congress to en­dorse him; Rep. Dun­can Hunter of Cal­i­for­nia; Reps. Lou Bar­letta and Tom Marino, both of Penn­syl­va­nia; Rep. Kevin Brady of Texas; Rep. Mar­sha Black­burn of Ten­nessee; and Rep. Kevin Cramer of North Dakota.

In Capi­tol Hill’s other cham­ber, Sen. Tom Cot­ton of Ar­kan­sas and Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina are friends-of-Trump, as is Sen. Joe

Manchin, West Vir­ginia Demo­crat.

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