President Donald Trump issued a warning on March 30 to conservative Republicans who are part of the Freedom Caucus, which opposed and ultimately stopped the GOP health care replacement bill in the House of Representatives.
The Freedom Caucus wanted a complete repeal of Obamacare, while the GOP bill, also called Trumpcare, only repealed parts of Obamacare. House Speaker Paul Ryan pulled the bill twice because he didn't have the votes.
Trump tweeted: "The Freedom Caucus will hurt the entire Republican agenda if they don't get on the team, & fast. We must fight them, & Dems, in 2018!"
RawStory.com notes that two members of the Freedom Caucus hit back at Trump on the same day.
Republican Rep. Justin Amash of Michigan tweeted back: "It didn't take long for the swamp to drain [Donald Trump]. No shame, Mr. President. Almost everyone succumbs to the D.C. Establishment."
Republican Rep. Ted Yoho of Florida told MSNBC: "I heard about [Trump's tweet] on the way over here. It's unfortunate. We’re not fighting the president, we’re trying to honor what we ran on: 100 percent repeal of the Affordable Care Act. That's what we're going to stick to."
Republican Rep. Thomas Massie of Kentucky, who is not a member of the Freedom Caucus, tweeted: "[Donald Trump] it's a swamp not a hot tub. We both came here to drain it. SwampCare polls 17%. sad."
Trump also took aim at the The New York Times -- a newspaper he regularly reads and attacks -- on Twitter on March 30: "The failing [New York Times] has disgraced the media world. Gotten me wrong for two solid years. Change libel laws?"
According to Business Insider, this latest skirmish is over a tweet by Trump on March 29: "Remember when the failing [New York Times] apologized to its subscribers, right after the election, because their coverage was so wrong. Now worse!"
The New York Times tweeted back on the same day: "[Donald Trump] False, we did not apologize. We stand by our coverage & thank our millions of subscribers for supporting our journalism."
POLITICO notes that Trump suggested on the campaign trail that he would make it easier for people to sue news organizations by opening up the libel law.
The news site reports that Trump would have a difficult time doing that given the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling in the 1964 case of New York Times Co. v. Sullivan, which said the press is protected by the First Amendment and set a high standard for a libel lawsuit to win.