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Freedom Caucus rep to Trump: 'Remember who your real friends are'

Freedom Caucus rep to Trump: 'Remember who your real friends are'
© Greg Nash

A member of the House Freedom Caucus said Friday that President Trump should rethink battling the conservative group after the president indicated he would "fight" members over the failed GOP healthcare push last week.

"Remember who your real friends are," Rep. Raúl Labrador (R-Idaho) tweeted to Trump. "We're trying to help u succeed."

Labrador argued that the GOP healthcare bill his caucus fiercely opposed before it was pulled last week does not fulfill Republican pledges to repeal and replace ObamaCare.

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Trump attacked the Freedom Caucus earlier Thursday, vowing to “fight” its members in next year’s midterm elections and lumping the GOP members in with Democrats.

“The Freedom Caucus will hurt the entire Republican agenda if they don’t get on the team, & fast,” Trump tweeted. "We must fight them, & Dems, in 2018!”

Trump’s tweet escalated an internal party feud that could have ramifications for other parts of the president's legislative agenda.

Freedom Caucus members quickly struck back, with Rep. Justin AmashJustin AmashEnergized by polls, House Democrats push deeper into GOP territory Ocasio-Cortez draws hundreds of thousands of viewers on Twitch livestream Hillicon Valley: House votes to condemn QAnon | Americans worried about foreign election interference | DHS confirms request to tap protester phones MORE (R-Mich.) lashing out at the president over Twitter.

“It didn’t take long for the swamp to drain @realDonaldTrump,” wrote Amash, a frequent Trump critic. "No shame, Mr. President. Almost everyone succumbs to the D.C. Establishment.”

“It’s just a tweet,” Rep. Andy Biggs (R-Ariz.), one of the group’s newest members, told The Hill outside the Capitol when asked about Trump’s remarks.

Republicans are warring over last week’s stunning collapse of GOP leaders' legislation for repealing and replacing ObamaCare.

Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanMcCarthy faces pushback from anxious Republicans over interview comments Pelosi and Trump go a full year without speaking Jordan vows to back McCarthy as leader even if House loses more GOP seats MORE (R-Wis.) pulled the American Health Care Act (AHCA) last Friday as dozens of conservative and moderate Republicans voiced opposition to the legislation ahead of a vote.

The decision to scrap the controversial bill came after Trump issued an ultimatum that the lower chamber vote on it, though many remained opposed to the legislation. Freedom Caucus members insisted the bill didn't go far enough to repeal ObamaCare.

The AHCA’s implosion was a stinging defeat for Trump, Ryan and other Republican leaders who have long promised they would repeal and replace former President Obama’s healthcare law.

Republican infighting could now endanger multiple items on Trump’s agenda, including tax reform, infrastructure development and a must-pass spending bill for avoiding a government shutdown April 29.