Jeff Flake wants GOP primary challenge to Trump in 2020

The rebellion is swelling among members of the US Congress's Republican majority dismayed over Donald Trump's contentious new trade tariffs, with many elected officials threatening to block the president's decree. "But that's not to say it will stay that way", Flake said.

Flake has not said he's running for president in 2020 but has refused to rule out such a move, even while acknowledging he probably couldn't get renominated for Senate in his home state.

The House speaker's condemnation was swiftly echoed by other top Republicans in Congress, who fear the tariffs could spark a trade war and hurt the United States economy. The series, put on by the New Hampshire Institute of Politics and New England Council, describes its mission as providing "New Hampshire and New England business leaders with a chance to meet with major party presidential candidates" and calls itself "a "must-stop" on the presidential campaign trail".

Trump's remarks at a campaign rally Saturday night are the latest example of his inappropriate behavior, Flake said.

In a speech on the Senate floor on Monday, Flake announced his legislation that would essentially bar the tariffs from being implemented. Last year, he wrote a book rebuking his own Republican Party for embracing Trump-style nationalism and protectionism at the expense of traditional conservative values such as free trade.

Flake has been a longtime critic of President Trump, occasionally using over the top rhetoric to do so.

While no big name has officially stepped forward yet to say such a run is definitely in the works, one Republican senator thinks a member of the GOP should toss his or her proverbial hat in the ring in the 2020 primary.

Flake's efforts to nullify Trump's tariffs come as he has also attempted to push a massive amnesty for millions of illegal aliens that would flood the USA labor market and immediately drive down wages for American workers.

"I think we're going completely the wrong direction, " he said.

"The risk is that this becomes normalized, and we take as normal what is abnormal. We need him to do the right thing now: scrap the tariffs and return his focus to policies that will grow and invigorate the economy to the benefit of all Americans", she said. "The problem is when you say, "Let's have tariffs, but let's couple that with uncertainty" - that's nearly worse, " Flake said.

Dan Nowicki is The Arizona Republic's national political reporter.