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Vulnerable Republicans seek distance from Trump in new Congress

A handful of Republicans who face tough re-elections have bucked their party's leadership on the government shutdown.

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WASHINGTON — While President Donald Trump adjusts to life with a Democratic-led House, some Republican members of Congress are also wrestling with their own allegiances and political futures, finding ways to distance themselves from their party’s president as a new era of divided government begins.

Cracks in the GOP ranks have already emerged as skittish Republicans, many of whom face difficult elections in 2020, have begun asserting their independence.

Their actions have ranged from siding with Democrats on efforts to reopen the government to writing a stinging op-ed about the president in just the first week of the new year.

And with a host of Republicans facing re-election in blue or purple states or districts in 2020, Democrats plan to take advantage of the political dynamics to upset the GOP’s agenda.

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