Just before he was inaugurated, President Donald Trump was busy trying to get a Democrat to switch parties, just like he once did.
While courting Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND) for a potential Cabinet position in December 2016, Trump asked her if she’d consider joining the Republican Party, according to The Washington Post.
“When I visited him in Trump Tower before he was sworn in, he asked me to switch parties,” Heitkamp told the Post on Tuesday. “He says, ‘You should switch parties.’ … I said ‘You should give me and Ex-Im Bank.’”
Heitkamp was referencing the Export-Import Bank, which, at the time, she was a vocal advocate for.
Heitkamp, a moderate Democrat, also suggested that last December was not the only time the President had asked her to switch sides. When he asked her to join him while he pitched his tax plan in North Dakota last September, Trump “might have asked me on that trip” to become a Republican, she said.
“He’s always ribbing me a little bit about being too conservative to be a Democrat,” she said. “I think he knows it’s not going to happen.”
Heitkamp, who will likely face a Trump-backed conservative in her reelection bid this fall, said she has often found middle ground with Trump and even agrees with his policy on issues like deregulation and fighting for “working people,” she told the Post.
Read the Post’s full report on Heitkamp here.