Republican strategist Luntz says Oval Office clash makes us 'smaller'

While some viewers were entertained by Tuesday's verbal brawl in the Oval Office, Republican strategist Frank Luntz sounded a pessimistic note.

The well-known focus group guru said he did not like what he saw between President Donald Trump and Democratic congressional leaders Sen. Chuck Schumer and Rep. Nancy Pelosi.

"We all walk away smaller," he said on Powerhouse Politics podcast with Senior White House Correspondent Jonathan Karl and Political Director Rick Klein. "We're in a situation now where every rule of decorum is now broken. That people say and do anything at any time anywhere. Both sides."

Luntz travels the country conducting focus group to gauge where the country is politically and what trends influence voters at the polls.

"It's all bad," he said. "I don't see it getting any better. I think this is a view that the country is going to have going forward. I think that this is going to be the way politics works over the next two years. That we will hit a stalemate that both sides will seek whatever kind of communication advantage they can get and the public be damned. The public is screwed."

Luntz said he was frustrated by seeing the rough and tumble world of politics through the lens of winners and losers.

"I get that journalists are always trying to say who won and who lost," he said. "At some point we have to step back, put down our eye shades and our pens and pads, and look at the condition of the country. It isn't good. And you see it. I see it in my travels. People insulting each other."

However, he did allow that Trump may have miscalculated by taking blame for a potential government shutdown if the border wall and his security plan are not fully funded.

"My hunch is that he said the wrong thing at the wrong time, and it will make it more difficult for Republicans," Luntz said of the president.

But he added that Americans have short memories, and the next election is two years away.

Luntz sounded a more optimistic note in talking about something more unifying than politics: baseball.

Before wrapping up, the group did some bonus handicapping of the baseball free-agent class, including where Bryce Harper and Manny Machado will land.

Every Wednesday, ABC Radio and iTunes brings you the Powerhouse Politics Podcast which includes headliner interviews and in-depth looks at the people and events shaping U.S. politics. Hosted by ABC News' Chief White House Correspondent Jonathan Karl and ABC News Political Director Rick Klein.
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