Donald Trump's long-awaited reconciliation meeting with Republican senators went so badly that several attendees anonymously leaked details of Trump's tantrum and namecalling to the New York Times.
According to the unnamed sources, Trump called one senator a "loser" and threatened to scuttle the re-election campaign of Arizona Senator Jeff Flake (who is not up for re-election).
Mr. Trump at one point jabbed at Senator Ben Sasse of Nebraska, who has openly called for a third-party candidate to thwart Mr. Trump's chances, asking Mr. Sasse rhetorically if he preferred to have Mrs. Clinton as president.
Mr. Sasse did not respond in kind — but Senator Jeff Flake of Arizona did.
Mr. Flake, of Arizona, told him that he wanted to support Mr. Trump, but could not because of Mr. Trump's statements about Mexican-Americans and attacks on a federal judge over his Hispanic descent.
Mr. Trump responded by saying that he had been going easy on Mr. Flake so far, but that he would ensure that Mr. Flake lost his re-election bid this year if the senator did not change his tune.
Dumbstruck, Mr. Flake informed Mr. Trump that he was not up for re-election this year.
(After the meeting, Mr. Sasse said through a spokesman that he still believed that, "with these two candidates, this election remains a Dumpster fire.")
Peacemaking Goes Awry as Donald Trump Lashes Out at G.O.P. Senators
[Alan Rappeport, Jennifer Steinhauer and Maggie Haberman/NYT]