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After dance with Democrats, Trump laments Republican 'death wish'

WASHINGTON, Sept 8 (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday put pressure on fellow Republicans in Congress to act quickly on tax reform after he made surprising deals with Democrats on government funding and the debt ceiling, criticizing his party as having a "death wish."

In a series of Twitter posts, the Republican president said he had to turn to the opposition party to pass any legislation, given Republicans' narrow hold on the U.S. Senate. He again lambasted Republicans for failing to repeal and replace healthcare legislation known as Obamacare, one of his top priorities.

"Republicans, sorry, but I've been hearing about Repeal & Replace for 7 years, didn't happen!" Trump said.

As he has in the past, Trump bemoaned a Senate rule that requires a supermajority of 60 votes to pass legislation without exposing it to opposition tactics that could block it. The Republicans have only a 52-48 advantage in the Senate.

"8 Dems control - will rarely get 60 (vs. 51) votes," Trump tweeted. "It is a Repub Death Wish!"

He also called on Republicans to start working on tax reform legislation, another of his top campaign promises.

"Don't wait until the end of September," he tweeted. "Needed now more than ever. Hurry!"

Trump's administration has failed to push through any major legislation since he took office in January and his tweets signaled his growing frustration with Congress.

Trump stunned members of his party on Wednesday by striking a deal with Democratic congressional leaders to fund the government and lift the debt ceiling for three months as well as provide hurricane aid.

On Thursday, Trump suggested he also was willing to work with Democrats to end congressional battles over the U.S. debt ceiling.

Trump also reached out to their congressional leaders on how to resolve another tricky issue - the fate of the 800,000 young adults brought illegally to the United States as children. He even agreed to a request by Nancy Pelosi, the top Democrat in the House, to publicly reassure so-called Dreamers they did not face imminent deportation.

Trump administration officials said the budget deal helped clear the legislative calendar to push through other top legislative priorities, including tax reform.

The Senate passed the budget deal on Wednesday and the House is scheduled to vote on the package on Friday.

Mark Meadows, the head of the conservative House Freedom Caucus, said he saw Trump's alliance with Democrats as a "one-off" move even as it rattled many in the party who now wonder if Trump will turn to Democrats on other issues.

"Our grassroots are very confused," Meadows told MSNBC. But he said after talking to the president and House Speaker Paul Ryan, he did not think there was cause for concern.

"This was a unique situation," he said. (Reporting by Susan Heavey and Doina Chiacu; Editing by Bill Trott)