Let’s face it. No one really knows what’s going to happen this year. The president and his aides pride themselves on misdirection and unpredictability, even as they are firmly committed to a populist and nationalist agenda. Many Republicans in DC are uncomfortable with parts of this agenda - as well as his style - but they are happy to have a White House willing to push ahead on their top priorities like increased spending on defense, tax cuts and an Obamacare repeal. But, before everyone starts putting odds on what gets passed and what doesn’t in 2017, it’s important to look at the fundamental challenges Republicans face in pursuing any sort of legislative agenda. 
1. A united GOP base that shows no sign of abandoning Trump. The President does not “come” from the Republican Party, but the Republican Party has come to him. Not only does he continue to enjoy solid approval ratings from the Republican base, but these voters also see him as the one who should be setting the policy for the party and the country. 

More from the Cook Political Report

Four Possible Leaders; Four Unenviable Tasks
National Politics
Photo of Charlie Cook
First Person
Cook Politcal Logo
Where History Rhymed and Where It Didn’t
National Politics